Down to its lowest tally in the Delhi Municipal Corporations, the state unit of the Congress has pressed the reset button, with Delhi unit chief Ajay Maken urging workers to prepare for the next elections in the city. Speaking to The Indian Express, Maken said the party “will continue to work as an opposition in the state”. Maken had tendered his resignation to the party high command after the MCD results on April 26, but was asked to continue to lead the party.
In his first meeting with newly elected councillors and party workers, Maken said that the Congress will continue to oppose the Delhi government on its policies and programmes.
Councillors have also been asked to keep a keen watch on corruption in the MCDs and have a “proactive approach in every ward”. A ward-wise analysis of the MCD election results is also underway.
From 64 seats in East, 104 in North and 104 in South, the Congress now has 3, 15 and 12 seats, respectively. The BJP secured the highest seats in the municipal polls (181), followed by AAP (47). The Congress featured at third place, winning just 30 of the 270 civic wards.
However, the party’s vote share in the capital increased from 9 per cent in the last assembly elections to approximately 22 per cent in the civic polls.
“People have recognised our efforts and just as our vote share dropped gradually, it will increase gradually. It went from 40 per cent in 2008 to 15 per cent in 2013 to 9 per cent in 2015,” Maken said. He added that the party’s core voterbase is slowly returning, and an increase in vote share is a sign of a revival.
The core issues the party raised ahead of the MCD polls — sanitation, financial mismanagement, primary health and primary education — will continue to be its focus as it begins a fresh term in the MCDs. The party had brought out separate manifestos on each issue as well as one on urban infrastructure.