Gautam Gambhir’s strike rate in MCD polls makes him BJP’s CM face frontrunner?

| Updated: 07 December, 2022 8:30 pm IST

The Bharatiya Janata Party has lost the MCD elections following a 15 year uninterrupted reign. But it might have gained a credible face for an urban electorate like Delhi- something it has been lacking both in 2014 and 2019. Former cricketer turned politician Gautam Gambhir managed to win 61 per cent wards (22/36) in East Delhi Lok Sabha constituency – a strike rate that far outweighs the performance of his colleagues like Meenakshi Lekhi and Manoj Tiwari – leaders whose name often make the rounds as possible CM faces whenever the elections are around.

“Thanks to all the workers of East Delhi. This victory is neither of the MP, nor of any MLA, nor of any corporator. This is the victory of your hard work. Our workers are our strength. Kudos to the organization,” he tweeted.

Despite having a strong support-base among Delhi’s upper class educated vote bank, BJP’s failure to zero in on a charismatic face has been a major lacunae in its game plan in the national capital, allowing the Aam Aadmi Party not only two consecutive wins in the Assembly election but now even the MCD seems to have slipped out of its hands.

Gambhir truly came on his own during the campaign trail in the run up the MCD elections. The Aam Aadmi Party centred their entire campaign around the Ghazipur landfill The Ghazipur landfill, which falls within his constituency.

Ahead of the MCD elections, Kejriwal made a dramatic visit to the Ghazipur landfill in full media glare and declared that he would rid Delhi of garbage mounds. Yet, Gambhir was able to clinch over 60 percent of seats in East Delhi says something about the work the former cricketer has done in his constituency.

After the numbers for his constituency were out, Gambhir tweeted, “THANK YOU EAST DELHI! We will finish the Ghazipur garbage mountain! Jai Hind.”

Gambhir has reportedly spent MPLADS funds to clear the landfill site. He also claimed to have brought it down by 12 metres.

In a report card he presented in July, 2021 in the second year of his term he highlighted that six lakh people were provided quality food at Re 1 per meal from two community kitchens started by him.

He said that 7,48,800 metric tonnes of legacy waste has been treated at Ghazipur landfill. He had facilitated the installation of three giant air purifiers, upgraded facilities at Yamuna Sports Complex, distribution of 1,000 oxygen concentrators and other relief material during the second wave of Covid-19. He has also organised vaccination camps for the needy under ‘Mission Vaccinate Delhi’ at his office as well as in some slum clusters, it added.

Probably the work ethics of a sportsman drives his goal driven approach in politics and may prove to be a worthy candidate to fill in the specific vacuum of a dynamic leader in BJP Delhi – someone who appeals to the taxpaying, hardworking middle-class voter of Delhi.


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