BJP, AAP and Congress gear up for Delhi civic polls likely to be held this year-end or early next

Following the delimitation exercise, the number of municipal wards in Delhi now stands at 250 out of which 42 will be reserved for scheduled cast (SC) category and 50 percent for women candidates.

Published: 22nd October 2022 04:25 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd October 2022 04:27 PM   |  A+A-

civic polls

Representational Illustration


NEW DELHI: After the Centre notified the delimitation of municipal wards, activities related to civic elections in Delhi have started picking up the pace as the State Election Commission here set the balls in motion ahead of the polls by issuing a number of notifications.

The Delhi State Election Commission in the last one week has issued numerous notifications and orders ranging from the reservation of municipal wards, eligibility criteria for voters and appointments of nodal and sub-nodal officers for each zone among others.

The Commission has also asked the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to allocate their staff for civic polls and also complete all the tendering work for projects by October 21.

MCD polls are expected to take place at the fag end of 2022 or early next year. However, any formal announcement regarding the dates of MCD polls is yet to happen.

"All these activities clearly show that MCD elections are anticipated soon. It may be conducted either in December or early next year. Our preparations are going on and we are waiting for the formal announcement of dates," a senior MCD official said on Saturday, requesting anonymity.

Municipal polls were slated to be held in Delhi in April this year.

They were put on hold hours before then Delhi State Election Commissioner S K Srivastava was to announce the schedule on March 8 due to the Centre's plan to reunify the three civic bodies.

The three civic bodies were reunified by the Centre in May this year and the exercise for delimitation of wards was started in July 2022.

The Ministry of Home Affairs on October 17 had issued the final gazette notification for redrawing of municipal wards in Delhi.

The SEC on Wednesday had appointed nearly 70 returning-cum-scrutinising officers for the 250 municipal wards, setting the wheels in motion for the civic polls.

Each officer has a bundle of wards under his jurisdiction.

There were earlier three civic bodies -- North, South and East Delhi Municipal Corporations -- that were reunified as the Municipal Corporation of Delhi in May 2022.

The previous three corporations in Delhi comprised 104 wards each in North and South corporations and the East corporation had 64 wards under its jurisdiction.

Following the delimitation exercise, the number of municipal wards in Delhi now stands at 250 out of which 42 will be reserved for scheduled cast (SC) category.

The SEC in a notification on Friday said 50 per cent wards will be reserved for women candidates.

On part of the MCD, it has issued the list of nodal and sub-nodal officers for civic polls.

According to an MCD communication issued earlier this week, all the zonal additional director of education (ADEs) of the education department are deputed as sub-nodal officers (manpower).

An officer from the Education department at HQ, i.e., additional director in department of education (DOE), will be deputed as nodal officer (manpower) for uploading or updating the information details in respect of the MCD HQ, the MCD circular had said.

Deciding the eligibility criteria for voters, the SEC on Thursday in a notification said that people whose names are mentioned in the electoral rolls revised till January 1 this year will be treated as voters in the forthcoming municipal elections.

Municipal elections in the city are due in April this year and are expected to be conducted towards the fag end of this year or early next year.

The BJP, which was ruling the three municipal corporations in Delhi for over a decade before their reunification, the AAP, and the Congress have already started preparation for the polls.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah sounded the bugle for civic polls in Delhi as he appealed to the public to choose cautiously between "Vigyapan ki Rajniti (politics of advertisement) and Vikas ki Rajniti (politics of development)" in the forthcoming MCD elections.

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Speaking at an event here, Shah had said that the Arvind Kejriwal-led party wanted Delhi to be 'AAP Nirbhar' while the BJP wanted the city to be Atmanirbhar, and asked people to choose between the two in the MCD elections.

BJP chief J P Nadda had earlier this month in a rally of party workers in Ramlila Maidan accused the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) of becoming synonymous with scams and said that the saffron party will "trounce" the AAP in the MCD election and thereafter, in the Delhi Assembly polls.

The AAP had also been gearing up for municipal polls by cornering the BJP on a number of civic issues, alleged corruption in MCD, delayed projects among others.

The AAP leadership has said that nearly 3,000 teams of party volunteers have been carrying out door-to-door campaigns to raise awareness among people against the "rampant corruption" in the MCD.

The Congress too has ramped up its poll-related activities. A party functionary said that the Congress has appointed coordinators at the district level to get feedback on candidate selection and prepare for municipal polls.

Frequent meetings are also being held to take stock of the preparations for MCD elections, he said.


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