Delhi Election 2020: Who are the new candidates being fielded by AAP?

The Delhi Assembly elections will be held on February 8, with the counting of votes taking place on February 11.

The Aam Aadmi Party on Tuesday announced its list of 70 candidates for the Delhi Assembly polls to be held next month, with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will contest from the New Delhi Assembly seat. His Deputy, Manish Sisodia will contest from the Patparganj Assembly seat, the party's Political Affairs Committee said.

But with fresh faces being fielded from several areas, it is possible that not every party member is happy with the list. New candidates have been fielded from the areas including Chandni Chowk, Karawal Nagar, Bijwasan, Rajouri Garden, Gandhi Nagar, Matia Mahal and Dwarka.

So, who are these candidates, and who did they push aside?

In Dwarka, for example, rather that sitting MLA Adarsh Shastri, the AAP is fielding Vinay Kumar Mishra.

Adarsh is former PM Lal Bahadur Shastri's grandson. It is quite possible that the party took this decision keeping in mind the Purvanchal (an area comprising Uttar Pradesh and Bihar) voters, and the fact that Mishra is the son of Congress leader Mahabal Mishra.

Adarsh incidentally had quit a high-paying job with Apple to join the party.

The situation in Karawal Nagar is somewhat different. MLA Kapil Mishra was disqualified nearly a year ago now, after sharing the stage with BJP leaders. ANd while he defended his decision, citing times when other AAP leaders including Kejriwal have shared the dais with political rivals, it did not go down well.

Mishra joined the BJP in August last year.

The AAP is thus fielding senior leader Durgesh Pathak, who played an important role in the party's 2015 victory.

Shoaib Iqbal, a recent member of the AAP, is being fielded from Matia Mahal. He had joined the party recently from the Congress. MLA Aseem Ahmed Khan has been dropped in favour of the five consecutive time MLA who lost to AAP in 2015.

He had contested the 2013 polls from JD(U) and won. According to a News 18 report, sources claim that the party had been on the lookout for a prominent face to woo Muslim voters.

Another Congress defector turned AAP member, Parlad Singh Sawhney is the party's candidate for Chandni Chowk. He replaces MLA Alka Lamba who was disqualified from state Assembly by Speaker Ram Niwas Goel "on grounds of defection".

"My journey with AAP will end in 2020," she had earlier tweeted.

Sawhney had won the state elections as a Congress leader in the 1998, 2003, 2008 and 2013 polls.

Bijwasan MLA Devendra Sherawat is no longer with the AAP, and thus the party has now chosen to field advocate BS Joon from the area.

Having rebelled when Kejriwal chose to part ways with other founding members Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, Sherawat was suspended. Thereafter, he joined the BJP.

Another story of defection, in Gandhi Nagar, has resulted in the AAP choosing Naveen Choudhary for the 2020 polls. Former choice Anil Bajpai was sacked from the party for rebelling, and thereafter joined the BJP.

In Delhi's Rajouri Garden, the AAP has chosen to field Dayanand Chandila's wife Dhanwanti Chandila. In the 2017 bypolls, Shiromani Akali Dal leader, Manjinder Singh Sirsa had won the seat. The bypoll was made necessary after AAP's sitting legislator Jarnail Singh dropped out in order to contest from Punjab.

(With inputs from agencies)

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