Some prominent candidates bite the dust; significant success for Independents
The results of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi elections that were announced on Tuesday threw up some surprising wins and some unexpected losses.
A few prominent names including that of a former Mayor of Delhi and a sitting councillor found mention in the list of losers, while a significant rise in the number of independent candidates who won over their rivals from mainstream political parties was a huge surprise.
While the BJP celebrated its victory, its candidate from Vishwas Nagar, former Mayor Kanwar Sain, lost to his rival Ratan Singh of the Congress by 72 votes. Leader of Opposition in MCD Jaikishen Sharma lost his Najafgarh seat, as did sitting councillor Anuja Popli to Mahender Nagpal by over 6,000 votes in Wazirpur.
Former Delhi University Students' Union (DUSU) president Shalu Malik had to taste defeat after her rival Neelam Dhiman of the BJP won the Shastri Nagar seat by 2,060 votes. Former Deputy Mayor Ramesh Dutta won his Minto Road seat beating his BJP rival by 2,798 votes.
Another former DUSU president Amrita Dhawan fared better, winning the Subhash Nagar seat by 1,947 votes. Ashish Sood of the BJP, also a former DUSU office-bearer, beat his Congress rival Sanjay Puri by a mere 19 votes.
A shot in the arm for the BJP's secular credentials came when the results announced the victory of Hoor Bano from Qasab Pura, defeating Zahida Begum of Congress by 3,556 votes.
MCD Standing Committee chairman Yogendra Chandolia defeated BJP's Kedar Nath to claim the Dev Nagar seat by a margin of 3,399 votes. Leader of the House Subhash Arya defeated Manmohan Singh Kochhar of the Congress to win the Raja Garden seat by 5,711.
It was celebrations all the way in the Chandela household when news of the victory of husband-wife duo Meghraj and Meenakshi came in. Son of Congress MLA Dayanand Chandela, Meghraj defeated Jaiprakash Lohia of the Nationalist Congress Party in Punjabi Bagh, while his wife Meenakshi defeated Karuna Bhalla of the BJP in Mahipalpur by 6,288 votes.
In Congress' Uttam Nagar MLA Mukesh Sharma's house the mood was far from upbeat when nephew Rahul Sharma lost the Major Bhupinder Singh Nagar seat to BJP's Anil Sabharwal. Mr. Sharma had fought hard to secure a ticket for his nephew.
With a margin as low as 18, BJP's R. N. Dubey from Dilshad Garden managed to win the seat defeating Ajit Singh of the Congress.
Madhav Prasad Jatav, who was arrested recently in connection with the murder of BJP worker Jaiprakash in Model Town, took many by surprise when he was declared winner from Sangam Park.
Cricketer Virendra Sehwag's sister Anju Meharwal won the Dakshinpuri seat on Congress ticket.
A prominent win in the Congress camp was that of Nizamuddin councillor Farhad Suri, who won by a margin of 2,128 votes. Describing his victory as a “relief”, he said it was his “work” that won him the seat. “I am very pained when people talk of playing the communal card. I have been secular all my life and in this election I had to fight the rampant use of money and liquor and my own party colleague MLA Tarvinder Singh Marwah campaigning against me,” he said.
Delhi BJP chief Vijender Gupta's wife Shobha won in Rohini Central defeating her Congress rival Monica Puri. Delhi Mayor Rajni Abbi of BJP won the Mukherjee Nagar seat, as did Deputy Mayor Anil Sharma of the BJP.