state news

MCD election: Liquor shops and bars in Delhi to be closed until Sunday evening

A few other shops along the NCR border may also be asked to stay shut.

Delhiites are gearing up for a dry weekend as the state excise department has asked all liquor shops in the Capital to remain shut because of the civic body elections on Sunday. All pubs and liquor shops will be closed from 5.30 pm on Friday to 5.30 pm on Sunday, when voting ends.

Apart from shops in the Capital, a few others along the Noida-Delhi and Gurugram-Delhi border may also be asked to stay closed for these two days. District officials of adjoining states in the National Capital Region will hold meetings to decide on the matter, according to Hindustan Times.

More than 1.3 lakh voters will exercise their franchise in the elections to the 272 seats of three municipal bodies – North Delhi Municipal Corporation, South Delhi Municipal Corporation and East Delhi Municipal Corporation. The results will be declared on April 26, which will also be a dry day in Delhi.

Meanwhile, campaigning for the MCD polls ended on Friday. The election is likely to be a tripartite fight among the Bharatiya Janata Party, Aam Aadmi Party and the Congress. However, the AAP has been training its guns on the BJP more than any other party. Currently, the BJP holds 152 seats, Congress has 91, the Aam Aadmi Party has eight, Bahujan Samaj Party 10 and others have nine seats. One seat is vacant.

Chief Minister and AAP convenor Arvind Kejriwal on Friday said that people will be “responsible” for the consequences of voting for the BJP. “If you vote for BJP and someone in your house suffers from dengue or chikungunya you will be held responsible for it. If BJP comes to power in MCD then Delhi will remain dirty for the next five years,” said Kejriwal, according to CNN-News18.

The chief minister added that the BJP should not campaign in the name of Narendra Modi, as he will not be the one working for the civic body. “How will Modiji improve the situation in MCD. Work in the MCD will not be undertaken by Narendra Modi, but local BJP leaders like Vijender Gupta and others,” said Kejriwal. He also dismissed the Congress by saying that voting for them would mean wasting their vote.

The BJP and the Congress, on the other hand, accused the AAP of failing to perform its duties in the Capital. “The chief minister should tell us what he has done for Delhi in last three years,” said Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken. BJP’s Nupur Sharma also brushed aside Kejriwal’s attempt to blame the BJP for the poor state of health affairs in the Capital. “If BJP was responsible then court would have pulled up the BJP and not Delhi government,” the CNN-News18 quoted her as saying.

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