Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his Punjab counterpart Bhagwant Mann will on Tuesday address a rally in Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh, where polls are to be held at the end of the year, with the Aam Aadmi Party working hard to mobilise a one-lakh crowd.
The AAP hopes to make a mark in the politics of MP that so far has been centred around the Bharatiya Janata Party, which has been in power for a dominant part of the last two decades, and the Congress.
”We are working hard to ensure one lakh people attend our rally in BHEL Dussehra Maidan in Bhopal on Tuesday. After this, we are going to hold such big rallies in all the divisional headquarters in the state,” former MP AAP chief Pankaj Singh told PTI.
Singh said the AAP had made more than five lakh members since a drive was launched for this by the party’s organisation general secretary Sandeep Pathak on February 4.
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Pathak, who is considered one of the main architects of the AAP’s strategy in Punjab and Gujarat, has toured Bhopal, Indore, Rewa, Gwalior and Jabalpur as part of preparations for the Assembly polls.
The AAP, which recently announced it would contest all 230 Assembly seats in MP, is buoyed by its performance in the urban local body polls in July-August last year, where it claimed it had garnered 6.3 per cent of the vote share.
It had fielded 1,500 candidates for local body polls and the party managed to win the mayor’s post in Singrauli in the state’s Vindh region.
”Fifty-two candidates won in the local body polls, while 135-140 candidates came second. In panchayat polls, which are held without party symbols, AAP-supported candidates won 10 posts of district panchayat, 23 of janpad, 119 sarpanches, and 250 panches,” Singh said.
The AAP had won a landslide victory in Punjab, with its candidates defeating several Congress and Shiromani Akali Dal heavyweights.
In Gujarat, it undertook a high-decibel campaign promising several welfare measures, which it called ”guarantees”, resulting in five wins in the 182-member House in the western state with a vote share of 13 per cent.
The 2018 elections in Madhya Pradesh threw up a hung Assembly, with the Congress emerging as the largest party with 114 seats in the 230-member House. The BJP won 109 seats.
The Congress formed a coalition government under Kamal Nath, but it fell in March 2020 after several MLAs loyal to Jyotiraditya Scindia walked out and joined the BJP, paving the way for Shivraj Singh Chouhan to return as chief minister.