A heavy turnout in the critical third phase of the general elections to pick up 91 candidates has brought bad news for the ruling Congress. However, happy with the turnout, nearly same as the Delhi Assembly elections, Aam Aadmi Party expressed confidence that they are not just winning Delhi but NCR seats too.
Inputs received by the party headquarters from 11 states and three union territories that went to polls on Thursday till late evening predicted Congress losing more than 50% seats.
Out of 91 seats, Congress accounts for 46 sitting MPs. Out of which the party leaders say they would manage to retain 23 seats.
Reports reaching here said the voter enthusiasm was high in both working and middle class areas all over country. Congress main worry is that brisk polling has been reported even in affluent areas – who are perceived as voting against the party. "We are keeping our fingers crossed, but conventional wisdom shows that high turnout means a rout for ruling party," a senior Congress leader told dna. Even every seat that went to polls in Bihar on Thursday has reported 10% increase in polling compared to 2009.
The gloom in Congress stems from the fact that 46 seats that went to polls on Thursday were among 170 seats which had been identified by the party as definite to win.
Over past one week, a central team led by Congress spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala was in constant touch with the party leaders and candidates in these constituencies to enthuse them and provide whatsoever help they seek.
Though Surjewala was not available, other leaders in his team said they will now focus on remaining phases and ensure to keep live contacts with party workers and key person in every constituency.
Meanwhile, AAP said high voting in Delhi-NCR shows that AAP's core voter base is intact, even though everyone was claiming that it has withered away, and instead it has increased. "Election results will come on May 16 only but ground reports from our volunteers and supporters suggest that there was an overwhelming support for us on the ground," AAP's Deepak Bajpai told dna.
He said AAP is not just "confident of winning seven seats but four seats in National capital region – Ghaziabad, Faridabad, Noida, and Gurgaon – too".
Bajpai said the reports from the ground are revealing that "not just their voter base is intact but infact it has increased."
However, sources said party knows on seats like east Delhi and northeast Delhi the contest is very close and a little vote swing can be crucial.
In east Delhi, Mahatma Gandhi's grandson and AAP leader Rajmohan Gandhi is against Congress's sitting MP Sandeep Dikshit and Art of Living preacher turned BJP politician Maheish Girri. While from northeast Delhi, Professor Anand Kumar of AAP is against actor Manoj Tiwari of BJP and sitting Congress MP JP Agrawal.