Zealous allotment of tickets to women candidates in north Delhi has stirred discontent in the ranks of both BJP and Congress. BJP has nominated women to contest all the four municipal seats in the Timarpur assembly area, and Congress has done the same in the Wazirpur assembly area. While three seats each in these areas were reserved for women under the new 50% quota, party cadres are angry over the allotment of the ‘general’ seats to women as well.
Within hours of BJP nominating mayor Rajni Abbi for the Mukherjee Nagar general seat in Timarpur, its local unit (mandal) resigned on Monday. “We have submitted our resignation to the party’s Delhi unit chief Vijender Gupta. Abbi’s name was not on the list we sent to the election committee. The party should have considered deserving candidates,” said Yogender Bhatana, president of BJP’s Mukherjee nagar mandal.
Abbi said the heartburn was expected. “The criteria to give a ticket are not based on gender. The prospects of candidates decide their fate. I have nurtured this seat for five years and if anybody can prove that I didn’t do enough, I will withdraw my nomination,” she said.
In Wazirpur assembly constituency, Congress’s Anuja Popli has got the ticket to the Wazirpur unreserved seat, upsetting party workers and displaced councillors. Of the 68 sitting Congress councillors, less than 30 have got tickets this time.
“All the workers are upset and we want the party to reconsider its decision. People are angry and this will go against the party. We will meet our state unit president JP Aggarwal to convince him to consider candidates recommended by the block committee,” said OP Malhotra, Congress leader at the Wazirpur block level.
Former councillor Popli, who is up against BJP’s sitting councillor Mahender Nagpal, however said the locals are very happy with her nomination. “Voters, not party workers, are my concern. Residents of Wazirpur aren’t happy with the sitting councillor and since I have done good work earlier, I will win the poll comfortably,” she said.
However, Congress sources said Popli may have been fielded in Nagpal’s stronghold as a tactical move to ensure that he returns to the corporation without a hurdle.