In one of the massive victories in the Indian political history Arvind Kejriwal-led two-year old Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has scored a landslide win in the state elections in Delhi winning 67 seats in the 70-member assembly.
Although it accounted for 54 per cent of the overall vote share, it garnered over 95 per cent of the seats, making it one of the most decisive state elections ever.
This is the first big shocker for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) since it emphatically won the national elections last year. While exit polls had predicted a victory for AAP win Delhi, they were far off in predicting the clean sweep.
BJP, which had indulged in high voltage campaign led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a mascot and retired IPS officer Kiran Bedi as chief ministerial candidate, had dismissed the exit poll results and said it is confident of winning the elections.
BJP would not be able to nominate its own Leader of Opposition in Delhi as a party is required to have 10 per cent seats for the same.
BJP has won three seats. Congress, which was defeated in both the last state elections in December 2013 and the general elections last May as part of the UPA alliance, was swept off the political map of Delhi.
The 30-stock benchmark Sensex rose over 0.4 per cent after falling 1.7 per cent on the eve of the results day. However, the fall in the stock market the previous day had captured the anticipated defeat of BJP in Delhi. This perhaps explains the positive movement in the stocks on Tuesday, which was also supported by the revised GDP estimates for the country under the new base year.
A win for BJP would have been seen as a big booster for investors as a further mandate for the ruling national party. Moreover, a win would have helped its efforts to boost its voting power in the upper house of the parliament Rajya Sabha, whose members are elected by state assembly members.
Delhi elects three members to Rajya Sabha, which according to the result would all be AAP candidates.
AAP had earlier sprung a surprise by coming close to winning the state elections in late 2013 within a year of formally organising as a political party. It had gone ahead and formed a government with the outside support of the Congress. However, Kejriwal had resigned and dissolved the assembly in under two months of being in power, protesting against failure of support to let it pass a stronger anti corruption law.
This had turned away many of its supporters but it more than managed to claw back support in the elections held on February 7.
The Delhi elections were fought on the issues of power and water where parties promised subsidy on both to the people of Delhi. Now that AAP has come to the power, expectations are high that AAP would lead the wave of change in Delhi and deliver on promises made during the elections.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)