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Modi to launch Delhi poll campaign

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Hazaribagh: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses during an election rally ahead of third phase of Jharkhand assembly elections at Hazaribagh, Jharkhand on Dec. 6, 2014. (Photo: IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi will Jan 10 formally kick off the BJP’s campaign for the Delhi assembly elections while the state unit plans an “aggressive” fight against the Aam Aadmi Party in the run-up to the polls, a party leader said .

“Modi will launch the election campaign in Delhi amid the presence of party president Amit Shah at a gathering of over a lakh people at Ramlila ground on Jan 10,” Bhartiya Janata Party’s Delhi unit spokesman Harish Khurana said.

“He (Modi) is the captain of our team and we depend on him for our campaign,” he added.

The BJP’s three newest chief ministers from Harayana, Jharkhand, and Maharashtra would also be felicitated at the event, said Khurana. He sounded hopeful that there would be one more name to add to the list after the government formation in Jammu and Kashmir.

The campaign trail would witness active participation of key BJP leaders like union ministers Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj and Jagat Prakash Nadda, besides Shah himself, he said.

Election euphoria is in full swing within the party, which plans an “aggressive” campaign against its arch-rival AAP, he said.

“(Delhi) will see an aggressive and certainly an interesting campaign by the BJP and (AAP leader) Arvind Kejriwal has to answer a lot of questions,” Khurana said.

Armed with a “long” questionnaire, the BJP seeks to put AAP in the dock regarding the source of the money it is spending on outdoor campaigning at present and the work its government did during its brief tenure in Delhi early last year.

“The AAP has spent over Rs.100 crore on outdoor campaigning. The party says it’s an Aam Aadmi Party (party of the common man). Where is all this money coming from?” Khurana said.

Alluding to Kejriwal’s resignation as chief minister after 49 days, he said: “King of U-turns Kejriwal…ran away from the problems in the city. He claims to have fixed the city’s electricity and water problems. Why did he run off then?”

Khurana said one of the key canvassing tools would be vans with screens doing rounds across the city, showcasing a documentary on the Modi government’s achievements along with the BJP’s in the city civic body as well as in 1998 when it held the reins of power at the state level.

“Our focus will be the Modi government’s achievements and the recent regularisation of unauthorised colonies. The real development in those colonies will begin now,” he said.

Referring the Delhi Metro service launched by the then Congress government of the state in 2002, Khurana said the service was originally the BJP’s initiative when the party was in power in 1998.

He said union minister Harsh Vardhan is in charge of the election manifesto, MP Meenakshi Lekhi would focus on safety issues in Delhi while state leaders like Ramesh Bidhuri, Manoj Tiwari and Vijay Goel would also have key roles to play.

The elections to the Delhi assembly are likely to be held in February.

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