A two-way fight between BJP and AAP in Delhi Mayor Polls

BJP backs Rekha Gupta, whereas AAP fields Shelly Oberoi

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Getty Images

NH Digital

The BJP on Tuesday decided to field its Shalimar Bagh councillor Rekha Gupta as its Delhi Mayor candidate to challenge AAP's Shelly Oberoi in the January 6 elections.

The BJP has also named Kamal Bagri as deputy mayor candidate as well as Kamaljeet Sehrawat, Gajendra Daral and Pankaj Luthra for standing committee member posts, said Delhi BJP media cell head Harish Khurana.

The AAP has a clear majority in the 250-member Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) House.

Some party leaders claimed that an intense contest could be witnessed for the mayor as well as deputy mayor posts since the anti-defection law does not apply to the MCD and floor crossing could be possible.

The AAP ended the BJP's 15-year-rule in the MCD winning 134 of the 250 wards in the civic body polls earlier this month. The BJP managed to win 104 wards.

Later, Mundka councillor Gajendra Daral also joined the BJP.

BJP's IT head Amit Malviya had previously suggested the mayor's election was an open game. Days later, BJP Delhi chief Adesh Gupta said that the next mayor will be from AAP as it had won the election. "BJP will play the role of a strong opposition in the MCD," he had said.

Elections for the posts of mayor and deputy mayor will be held on January 6. Though the Delhi BJP is unlikely to win the post of mayor and deputy mayor, it will try to win three posts of members of the crucial standing committee of the MCD.

The election of mayor is held through a secret ballot and councillors are free to vote for any candidate since the anti-defection law does not apply to it.

The voters for the election of mayor, include 250 elected councillors, seven Lok Sabha and three Rajya Sabha MPs from Delhi and 15 MLAs of Legislative Assembly.

The Delhi Assembly Speaker has nominated 13 AAP and one BJP MLAs to the MCD.

The total votes for mayoral election are 274. The number game favours AAP having 150 votes against 113 of the BJP.

The Congress has nine councillors while two others are independents in the MCD House.

The election for the post of mayor, deputy mayor and standing committee members will take place on January 6.

There are 18 members in the standing committee of the MCD out of which 12 are elected from the zones and six from the House.

The AAP's backup candidates for the posts of mayor and deputy mayor in the MCD filed their nominations on Tuesday.

The party's candidates for mayor and deputy mayor -- Shelly Oberoi and Aaley Mohammad Iqbal -- had filed their nominations on Monday.

On Tuesday, the last date to file nominations, Ashu Thakur and Jalaj Kumar submitted their papers. Thakur is the backup candidate for mayor and Kumar for deputy mayor in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD).

Aamil Malik of Karawal Nagar ward, Raminder Kaur from Harinagar ward, Mohini Jeenwal of Seemapuri ward and Sarika Chaudhary of Jangpura ward had also filed their nominations for the Standing Committee on Monday.

The AAP had on Friday finalised six candidates for various MCD posts, including that of mayor and deputy mayor, with Oberoi emerging as its choice for the top post. The names were shortlisted at a meeting of its political affairs committee.

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