AAP swept minority seats in Delhi dashing Congress hopes

New Delhi: Aam Aadmi Party candidates have swept the five Muslims dominated seats, repeating its 2015 performance in Delhi. AAP candidate Shoeb Iqbal from Matia Mahal, Imran Hussain from Ballimaran, Prahlad Singh Sahni from Chandni Chowk and Abdul Rahman from Seelampur romped home easily defeating their nearest rivals.

Okhla, Seelampur and Old Delhi area saw violence during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act. But contrary to expectations, the Muslim minorities voted in favour of the AAP.

Congress leader from Okhla, Parvez Alam Khan made the point clear that “the prime focus was to defeat the BJP and we could not project ourselves to defeat them so the voter chose AAP.”

The same sentiments were seen in the constituency which has dominant muslim population. Kaleem Hafiz, who runs many educational institutes in Delhi and UP, says, “The pattern of the muslim voting reflects that they had two things in mind – to defeat the BJP and secondly, who is going to form government and the Congress was nowhere in between.”

AAP candidate Amanatullah Khan won with huge margin from the Okhla seat, which has been the epicentre of anti-CAA protest, surpassing last election margins. Amanatullah Khan got more than 81 per cent of the total votes polled.

In Seelampur, the constituency where violent anti-CAA protest erupted, AAP got more than 54 per cent of the total votes polled and it has become the first constituency whose result was declared on Tuesday.

In Matia Mahal, former Deputy Speaker Shoeb Iqbal won by huge margin getting more than 75 per cent of the votes.

In Ballimaran, AAP MLA and minister Imran Hussain has won the seat with a big margin, securing 64 per cent votes. The Congress has been decimated here as well.

In Chandni Chowk, sitting AAP MLA Alka Lamba lost the election as she switched side and contested from the Congress ticket this time. While former Congress MLA who contested from AAP Prahlad Singh Sahni won the seat, polling more than 60 per cent of votes. The minorities also sided with the AAP in Babarpur and Mustafabad.

Congress leaders have conceded defeat in the elections but the party said it was never the first choice of the voters.

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