Lok Sabha elections 2019: BJP retains 4 MPs for Delhi, 3 more to be decided today: In spite of the uncertainty of the alliance of AAP and Congress, BJP announced its 4 candidates on Sunday. The four of the seven Lok Sabha constituencies in the capital, which featured names of its sitting MPs are Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari from North East; Parvesh Verma from West; Ramesh Bidhuri from South; and Union Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan from Chandni Chowk.
According to a senior leader, these four seats were the “easiest to decide” as the top leaders were not keen on making changes, irrespective of whether the Congress and AAP formed an alliance in the capital or not.
While another senior leader said on this announcement, “Tiwari is our Purvanchali face. As party president, he has given results by helping the BJP win in MCD elections. Since he joined the party, our presence in the media has also increased.”
He further added, “Bidhuri and Verma are Gujjar and Jat leaders; the BJP would have given a ticket each to leaders from these two communities… Also, their performance was satisfactory so we gave them a second chance instead of fielding fresh faces. In Dr. Harsh Vardhan’s case, there were discussions last month to give him a ticket from East Delhi, where he has been an MLA several times. But the party felt he is the best candidate to win Chandni Chowk.”
As per sources, the party is likely to change its candidates on the remaining three seats. According to party sources, reasons vary from waiting for the opposition’s final decision on an alliance to the RSS and BJP leadership not being satisfied with the performance.
Harsh Vardhan will file his nomination on Monday morning. There were speculations that Vardhan, who has been a three-time MLA from Krishna Nagar in East Delhi, would be shifted to East Delhi constituency.
It is going to be an interesting contest in Chandni Chowk as while BJP has fielded Harsh Vardhan, the Congress is planning to field three-time former chief minister of Delhi, Sheila Dikshit from the constituency, which has a sizeable population of Muslims and Baniyas (traders). The Aam Aadmi Party has fielded Pankaj Gupta from the constituency.
Meanwhile, the MPs who have been fielded again said they are sure of winning, irrespective of an AAP-Congress alliance.
Verma said, “I was already in campaign mode, now I will take it to the next level. The alliance doesn’t make a difference to us as CM Arvind Kejriwal has exposed himself in the drama he has created over the past month… he has shown himself as someone indecisive, whom people should not trust.”
Bidhuri said, “AAP created propaganda by coming out with reports on me. I now invite (AAP leader) Gopal Rai and Kejriwal to the Constitution Club, where I will present my report card.” Tiwari said, “We will go to the public and expose how Kejriwal has stopped several policies, including Ayushman Bharat, which would have benefited people of Delhi.”
With the party reserving its decision on three seats — New Delhi, North West Delhi, and East Delhi — speculations were rife on Sunday evening that the BJP is planning to field new faces from these seats.