Setting at rest all speculation on which way the predominant Baniya and Muslim votes would swing the election in the Chandni Chowk constituency, Delhi BJP president Harsh Vardhan on Friday bagged the Lok Sabha seat by a comfortable margin of 1,36,320 votes, defeating TV journalist-turned-politician Ashutosh of the Aam Aadmi Party. Union Minister and two-time MP Kapil Sibal came third.
Of the 9,77,329 votes cast in the constituency, 4,37,938 went in favour of Dr. Vardhan. Ashutosh got 3,01,618 votes.
Mr. Sibal, who had won the 2009 elections by a margin of over 2 lakh votes, managed to secure only 1,76,206 votes, a figure that was even less than his previous victory margin.
Enthusiastic BJP supporters started gathering at the counting centre since morning and the numbers swelled as the day progressed and trends emerged. Dr. Vardhan himself was all smiles even before the results were announced; so much so that he even danced with his party workers celebrating his victory.
Reacting to the results, Dr. Vardhan said that he credited the relentless efforts put in by party workers and Narendra Modi’s leadership.
On whether he would be heading into the Central team or sees a role for himself in Delhi politics, Dr. Vardhan said it was for the party leadership to decide. Once the lead appeared to be a decisive one, the cadre celebrated by distributing sweets, bursting crackers and filling the air with slogans such as Har Har Modi, Ghar Ghar Modi .
In contrast to the elated physician, Mr. Ashutosh was more poised in assessing the result. He said it was just the beginning for his party and it has a long way to go.Whenasked if AAP’s fortunes would have been any better had it continued ruling Delhi, the former journalist said that it was certainly one of the many things the party would discuss while reviewing its performance.