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For the Congress, the Bawana bypoll is an opportunity to reverse its fortunes in Delhi. The seat, after all, is one where the Congress held sway for 15 years. Victory here, party leaders explained, is key. Leaving no stone unturned, the party’s last day of campaigning saw 60 corner meetings, six padyatras and door-to-door campaigns.
Attacking the AAP and the BJP, Delhi Congress president Ajay Maken said, “Neither the BJP at the Centre, nor the three corporations, nor the Delhi government has done any work here during the past year. Only the Congress has done work here in the past 15 years.” The Congress also claimed that AAP MLA Ved Prakash joining the BJP was mirrored by the induction of former BJP MLA Gugan Singh into AAP.
As part of their campaign strategy, senior leaders explained that the party had divided the assembly constituency into 111 sectors. “Each sector was put under the charge of senior leaders and Congress workers, who made door-to-door visits to make people aware of the development work carried out by the party when it was in power,” a senior leader said.
The party’s candidate, three-time MLA Surender Kumar, focused on his past tenure during his campaign. During a door-to-door visit at Krishna Vihar, he said, “Everyone here knows the work that I have done; it speaks for itself. If I win, I promise to expedite the development work which has stopped since 2013.”
Rajinder Sharma, a resident of Bawana, said, “The Congress is a known entity. We have given a chance to AAP and suffered. Now the AAP’s candidate is contesting elections from the BJP. We won’t make the same mistake again.” Apart from Maken and Kumar, former MP Sajjan Kumar, MP Deepender Hooda and former Delhi MLA Shoaib Iqbal were also present during campaigning.