11 February 2020 14:56

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New Delhi election: Kejriwal's AAP stuns Modi's BJP with huge win

While speaking to ANI in the national capital during Delhi election results counting process, the former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh Akhilesh Yadav spoke on counting. People have voted for development and progress." "Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is failing in its attempts of hatred politics," Akhilesh added. India's ruling Bharatiya Janata party is projected to suffer a major defeat in another key state election, after failing to win over voters in Delhi with a campaign that was one of its most polarising yet. The anti-establishment Aam Aadmi party (AAP), which has governed the capital for the past five years, is on course to win 62 seats in the 70-seat assembly, after running on an agenda centred on anti-corruption, healthcare and education, which have hugely improved during its time in power. 'Feed them bullets not biryani': BJP uses Delhi elections to stoke religious hatred Read more Much of AAP's popularity is centred on its leader, Arvind Kejriwal, once a self-confessed anarchist and anti-corruption activist, who has been highly critical of the BJP government during his time as Delhi chief minister.

Multiple AAP MPs celebrated the party's predicted victory. The senior AAP MP Sanjay Singh thanked Delhi's voters for the "historic mandate". "It took them [the BJP] the whole cabinet, 300 MPs, five chief ministers, many ex-chief ministers, their whole power but still they failed to defeat Kejriwal," said Singh. "The BJP respects the mandate given by the people of Delhi," he said. With the belief that the Aam Aadmi Party government will develop Delhi, I congratulate Arvind Kejriwal and his party." Prime minister Narendra Modi also tweeted his congratulations to the AAP and Kejriwal.

It appears that Congress, India's oldest party, which had ruled Delhi for 15 years until 2013, once again failed to win a single seat. While the Delhi polls are always among the most closely contested elections in India, determining who will control India's capital city of over 20 million people, this year felt particularly heated due to the protests that have continued to rock Delhi and the rest of the country in response to Modi's new citizenship law (CAA), which critics say is prejudicial to Muslims. In response, much of the focus of the BJP Delhi campaign was on the female-led protests in the Muslim-majority Delhi suburb of Shaheen Bagh against the CAA. In some of their most anti-Muslim rhetoric yet, senior BJP figures out on the campaign trail frequently referred to the women as "terrorists" and anti-nationals in an attempt to pitch the election as a battle for the "unity of India". The BJP minister Giriraj Singh said Shaheen Bagh was a "breeding ground for suicide bombers".

The protests in Shaheen Bagh and beyond had put the BJP on the back foot for the first time, and a win in Delhi was seen as a crucial way to recapture the narrative in its favour and demonstrate wide support for CAA. Delhi's governing Aam Aadmi Party (Common Man's Party or AAP) is on course for a stunning win in the assembly elections, according to the latest poll results. With counting of votes nearing completion, the AAP won 28 seats and was leading in another 35 of the 70 constituencies, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won 2 seats and was leading in another five, the Election Commission said on Tuesday. "Dilliwalon [residents of Delhi], I love you," said AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal addressing party workers in New Delhi. The results show the BJP's divisive campaigning did not seem to pay off, as voters opted for incumbent Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's pro-poor policies.

"The Delhi result is extremely important because it signals a defeat of the politics of polarisation and division that BJP unleashed here," political analyst Zoya Hasan told Al Jazeera. Exit polls released on Saturday projected the AAP, led by Kejriwal, winning more than 50 seats. Neha Tyagi, vice president of AAP's women wing, said: "We were expecting a win, but the way it is trending we are happy." "People have voted for the development work that AAP has been able to deliver in the last tenure," she told Al Jazeera. The AAP is leading with more than 55 seats in the 70-member assembly [Bilal Kuchay/Al Jazeera] The AAP's pro-poor policies have focused on fixing state-run schools and providing free healthcare and bus fares for women during its first term. The New Delhi election is being seen as a test of Modi's popularity following months of deadly nationwide anti-government protests against a new Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) that saw thousands of people take to the streets daily in the capital and across India.

"People of Delhi have rejected BJP's politics of hate and divide," Gurucharan Singh, an AAP supporter, told Al Jazeera. "BJP tried its best to make CAA a big election issue, but people gave its mandate to AAP on the development work it has done in the last five years and rejected BJP." The Hindu-nationalist BJP led by Modi won a bigger majority in a general election in May, but it has lost a string of state elections since then. Delhi election results: As the counting of votes in the Delhi assembly elections draws to a close, Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party is looking to clinch a massive victory over opponents Bharatiya Janata Party and Congress. While early trends suggest some unexpected upsets, AAP is looking to come back to power for the third time with a strong mandate. Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, Speaker Ram Niwas Goel and Atishi Marlena managed to win their respective seats after trailing for quite some time. Its candidate from Model Town Kapil Mishra lost to AAP's Akhilesh Pati Tripathi. AAP's Rajesh Nama Bansiwala also defeated Vijender Gupta in BJP's stronghold, Rohini. Adarsh Nagar: Pawan Sharma (AAP) Ambedkar Nagar: Ajay Dutt (AAP) Badli: Ajesh Yadav (AAP) Bijwasan: Bhupinder Singh Joon (AAP) Chandni Chowk: Parlad Singh Sawhney (AAP) Delhi Cantt: Virender Singh Kadian (AAP) Deoli: Prakash Jarwal (AAP) Gokalpur: Surendra Kumar (AAP) Hari Nagar: Raj Kumari Dhillon (AAP) Janakpuri: Rajesh Rishi (AAP) Jangpura: Praveen Kumar (AAP) Karol Bagh: Vishesh Ravi (AAP) Kasturba Nagar: Madan Lal (AAP) Kondli: Kuldeep Kumar (AAP) Krishna Nagar: SK Bagga (AAP) Malviya Nagar: Somnath Bharti (AAP) Mangolpuri: Rakhi Birla (AAP) Matiala: Gulab Singh (AAP) Mehrauli: Naresh Yadav (AAP) Model Town: Akhilesh Pati Tripathi (AAP) Moti Nagar: Shiv Charan Goel (AAP) Narela: Sharad Kumar (AAP) New Delhi: Arvind Kejriwal (AAP) Okhla: Amanatullah Khan (AAP) Patparganj: Manish Sisodia (AAP) Rajinder Nagar: Raghav Chadha (AAP) Patel Nagar: Raaj Kumar Anand (AAP) Rithala: Mohinder Goyal (AAP) Seelampur: Abdul Rehman (AAP) Shahadara: Ram Niwas Goel (AAP) Shakur Basti: Satyender Jain (AAP) Sultanpur Majra: Mukesh Kumar Ahlawat (AAP) Shalimar Bagh: Bandana Kumari (AAP) Tilak Nagar: Jarnail Singh (AAP) Tri Nagar: Preeti Tomar (AAP) Trilokpuri: Rohit Kumar (AAP) Uttan Nagar: Naresh Balyan (AAP) Vikaspuri: Mahinder Yadav (AAP) Wazirpur: Rajesh Gupta (AAP) Here's the full list of the leading AAP and BJP candidates: Badarpur: Ram Singh Netaji (AAP) Chhatarpur: Kartar Singh Tanwar (AAP) Also read: Delhi Election Results Live Updates: Delhi has shown Kejriwal is not 'terrorist' but 'nationalist': Sanjay Singh Also read: Delhi Election Result 2020: Counting time; how to check; when will trends start coming in? Also read: Delhi Election Results 2020: Watch live streaming on Aaj Tak, India Today -Manish Sisodia, who was the deputy chief minister in the outgoing AAP-led dispensation and led its education reform efforts, defeated his BJP rival Ravinder Singh Negi by over 3,000 votes, after initial hiccups. -Raghav Chadha, who was fielded from the Rajinder Nagar constituency in place of the sitting AAP MLA, also defeated his BJP rival Sardar R P Singh. -Rajendra Pal Gautam, who held the portfolio of social welfare minister in the outgoing Delhi government, defeated BJP ally Lok Jan Shakti Party's Sant Lal. -AAP's S K Bagga won from the Krishna Nagar constituency where he was pitted against BJP's Anil Goyal. -The Tri Nagar and Shalimar Bagh seats also went to Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). -AAP's Kuldeep Kumar defeated Raj Kumar of the BJP from the Kondli seat. -Mukesh Kumar Ahlawat of the AAP defeated the BJP's Ram Chander Chawriya from Sultanpur Majra, a reserved seat. -Ram Singh Netaji of the AAP won the Badarpur seat against Ramvir Singh Bidhuri of the BJP. -AAP's Prakash Jarwal won the Deoli seat, defeating Arvind Kumar of the BJP, while the party's candidate Naresh Balyan retained the Uttam Nagar seat after defeating BJP's Krishan Gahlot. -In Shakur Basti, AAP's senior leader Satyendar Jain won after defeating Dr SC Vats. -Rajesh Gupta of the AAP emerged victorious from the Wazirpur seat while BJP's Dr Mahender Nagpal stood second. -Seelampur, which witnessed violence during a protest against the new citizenship law, saw AAP's Abdul Rehman emerging victorious against Kaushal Kumar Mishra of BJP. -Surendra Kumar of the AAP defeated Ranjeet Singh of the BJP to win the Gokalpur seat. AAP's Raghuvinder Shokeen won the Nangloi Jat seat against BJP's Suman Lata. -AAP's Ajay Dutt won the Ambedkar Nagar seat after defeating BJP's Khushiram Chunar.