New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) looks set for a second consecutive run at Delhi’s helm with all exit polls predicting an easy win for the Arvind Kejriwal-led party.
A party needs to win 36 seats to form government in Delhi, whose assembly has 70 seats.
The NDTV poll of exit polls showed AAP winning 56 seats, against BJP’s 14. The Congress, according to the poll, is headed for a repeat of its 2015 rout.
Among individual surveys, the India Today-Axis My India exit poll has predicted 59-68 seats for the AAP, and 2-11 for the BJP. According to this poll, the Congress won’t win any seat.
The Times Now-Ipsos exit poll suggested the 70 seats will be split between the AAP (47) and the BJP (23), with the Congress again drawing a blank. The India TV poll offered a similar prediction — 44 seats for the AAP, 26 for the BJP, and zero for the Congress.
Sudarshan News predicted 44-45 seats for the AAP, 24-28 for the BJP, and 2-3 for the Congress. News X-Polstrat said the AAP would win 53-57 seats, the BJP 11-17, and Congress 0-2.
According to TV9 Bharatvarsh-Cicero, the AAP will win 52-64 seats, the BJP 6-16, and the Congress, 0-2.
The Republic-Jan Ki Baat Survey said the AAP would win 48-61 seats, with the BJP a distant second with 9-21 seats. Its poll predicted 0-1 seat for the Congress.
The poll conducted by India News-Neta said the party would win 53-57 seats, with the BJP getting 11-17 and Congress, 0-2.
While the exit polls mark a fall for the AAP since 2015, when it won 67 seats, they suggest the BJP has made gains since its tally of three five years ago. Even so, if the exit polls prove true, a clear majority for a second consecutive term will be seen as a vote of confidence from Delhiites for the Kejriwal government.
The Congress, which led the union territory for three consecutive terms between 1998 and 2013, had drawn a blank in 2015.
The Delhi elections are crucial for both the BJP and the incumbent AAP. But the stakes are greater for the BJP as it has been out of power in the national capital since 1998.
The election has become all the more significant for the BJP as it has suffered a series of electoral setbacks since 2018 — even as it won the 2019 Lok Sabha polls by a landslide, the party has faced defeat in five states within one year. While it lost the elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, it failed to form the government in Maharashtra despite emerging as the single-largest party.
Freebies and Shaheen Bagh
The BJP did not announce a CM candidate and focused primarily on brand Modi, an issue raised by AAP leaders and chief minister Kejriwal during the campaign. The campaign of the party also focused on the work done by the central government, especially the decision to regularise over 1,700 unauthorised colonies. A last-ditch effort also saw the BJP adopt an aggressive pitch on protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act at Shaheen Bagh, Seelampur and Jamia Nagar.
Meanwhile, the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP is seeking reelection on the basis of its “freebies” and other populist schemes.
In the 2015 elections, which the AAP won with a sweep, all exit polls had predicted a majority for the AAP, but only one, India News-Axis, gave it more than 50 seats .