Now Kiran Walia vs. Kejriwal in New Delhi

KIran Bedi joins BJP

Becomes the second party after AAP to declare all its candidates through a fourth list

The Congress on Friday finally chose to clear the suspense over its choice of candidate to be fielded from the prestigious New Delhi Assembly constituency by pitting former Women and Child Welfare Minister Kiran Walia against the AAP’snational convener, Arvind Kejriwal.

Ms. Walia is considered close to former Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, who lost to Mr. Kejriwal from the seat in the last Assembly elections.

While the BJP is still undecided on the issue and is yet to even declare candidates, the Congress became the second major political party after the AAP to declare all its candidates through a fourth list with six names.

Besides Ms. Walia, the list announced the names of Raj Kumar Maggo, Dhuli Chand Lohia, Vishan Swaroop Agarwal, Zakir Khan and Satanpal Dayma. They would contest from Moti Nagar, Tilak Nagar, Sangam Vihar, Babarpur and Karawal Nagar respectively.

On Thursday, the Congress had released a list of 15 candidates, which included the name of President Pranab Mukherjee’s daughter Sharmishta, who will make her electoral debut in the city .

As has already been reported by  The Hindu , the party had received over two dozen applications, predominantly from former government servants, including ex-heads of now-defunct administration bodies, for a ticket from the New Delhi constituency.

Apart from former Delhi Mayor Farhad Suri, among the applicants were RN Chandelia, who was member of the fourth and the last Delhi Metropolitan Council between 1983 and 1990; Ashok Randhawa, president of the Sarojini Nagar Market Association; and Ramesh Sabharwal, former Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation chairman.

In addition, Sukha Ram and Mahesh Bhatt, both former members of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), were in the fray in addition to former party leader Usha Joshi.

The party’s performance in New Delhi, which was more or less a direct contest between Ms. Dikshit and Mr. Kejriwal among an electorate composed predominantly of government officials and bureaucrats, had been the worst with the 18000-odd votes polled in favour of the former proving no match from the latter’s 44,269.

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