Counting of votes for Delhi Assembly elections is underway at Delhi's Gole Market counting centre where the Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) used in five constituencies, including those of New Delhi where Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal contested from, have been kept.
The EVMs, since polling got over on February 08, had been kept under tight security in the strongroom at Atal Adarsh Bengali Balika Vidyalaya in Gole Market until the counting began in the morning today.
Kejriwal, sitting legislature from New Delhi, pipped three-time chief minister Sheila Dikshit in 2013 assembly elections. Since then the fight for the constituency has remained all the more interesting.
This time, while BJP fielded Sunil Yadav against the sitting chief minister, Congress gave the ticket to Romesh Sabharwal.
The counting of votes for 70 seats of the Delhi Assembly began amid tight security at 8 am at 21 centres across the city.
As much as 62.59 per cent voter turnout, out of over 1.4 crore eligible voters, was recorded in Delhi on February 8, when the elections were held in a single-phase in the national capital.
The ruling party -- AAP -- was mainly dependent on Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia. The Congress party had pressed its several leaders including Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra into campaigning.
The issues which dominated the campaigning were development, Shaheen Bagh, nationalism, Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), NPR, NRC, regularisation of unauthorized colonies.
In the last assembly poll, the AAP had won 67 seats, the BJP 3. Congress didn't open its account. Chief Minister Kejriwal led AAP is hoping to retain power for the second consecutive term. Similarly, the BJP is hopeful to gain a majority by cashing in on the popularity of Prime Minister Modi.
The Congress, which was in power for 15 years at a stretch in Delhi under the leadership of former Chief Minister late Sheila Dixit till the party lost to AAP in 2015 polls, hopes for a revival.
This time, the AAP has contested on all 70 seats, while the BJP had fielded its candidates on 67 seats and had left three seats for its allies -- two for JDU and one for LJP. On the other hand, Congress contested on 66 seats and left four seats to its ally RJD.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)