Chandigarh municipal polls: AAP wins 14 seats; BJP takes 12
Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) won the most seats in the Chandigarh municipal elections on Monday, pushing the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) to second place. The AAP secured 14 of the 35 municipal seats, while the BJP bagged 12 seats. The Congress secured eight seats, while the Shiromani Akali Dal got one seat. The number of seats has increased from 26 to 35.
Why does it matter?
- With the AAP's entry into the state, the straight rivalry between the BJP and the Congress stands challenged.
- The development comes just a few months before the 2022 Punjab Assembly elections, which now look to be a four-way contest between the aforementioned parties.
- AAP candidates defeated both Chandigarh mayor, Ravi Kant Sharma, and former mayor Davesh Moudgil.
BJP's vote share dips; Congress on the rise
AAP has taken 40% of the seats in the election. The BJP's share dropped from 77% in 2016 to 34% this year, a straight drop of 43%. Meanwhile, the Congress has increased its seat share from 15% in 2016 to 23% this year.
'Chandigarh rejects corrupt politics'
Kejriwal—also the chief minister of Delhi—tweeted celebrating his party's performance in the municipal polls on Monday. "This victory of Aam Aadmi Party in Chandigarh Municipal Corporation is a sign of the coming change in Punjab," he wrote in the tweet in Hindi. "The people of Chandigarh today have chosen honest politics of AAP, rejecting corrupt politics," he added.
Why should the BJP be worried?
Despite selecting first-timers and executing a low-key campaign, the AAP managed to defeat the BJP. The AAP was represented by only two significant names: party supremo Kejriwal and party MP Bhagwant Maan. Meanwhile, the BJP had brought forth numerous chief ministers for campaigning. "The Chandigarh election is a trailer, Punjab will be the full movie," said AAP MLA Raghav Chadha.
How did BJP lose the plot?
The results reveal that the party underestimated the silent support for reform. Evidently, the party's focus on religion did not manage to make a dent. BJP officials had also remained overconfident as the party had always had an advantage in the Chandigarh municipal polls.