All sitting ministers in Delhi’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government as well as the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly retained their seats in the elections which concluded on February 11. And all of them, except the Chief Minister and the Deputy Chief Minister, also recorded a rise in their vote share compared with the previous Assembly election.
While some Ministers including Manish Sisodia, Kailash Gehlot, Satyendra Jain and Speaker Ram Niwas Goel emerged victorious in tight contests, all of them winning with a margin of less than 10,000 votes, others including Arvind Kejriwal, Gopal Rai, Rajendra Pal Gautam and Imran Hussain won their seats with comfortable margins of more than at least 20,000 votes.
Deputy Chief Minister Sisodia, who encountered the largest drop in vote share of 4.31 percentage points from 2015, won after a neck-and-neck battle with the BJP’s Ravinder Singh Negi in the Patparpanj constituency. Mr. Sisodia, who had won by a margin of 28,791 votes in 2015, looked to be losing the seat as Mr. Negi maintained a lead in the first 10 rounds of counting. However, once he overtook his rival in round 11 in the afternoon, he managed to hold on and finally won by a margin of 3,207 votes, the smallest among all ministers.
Similarly, Speaker Goel trailed in the first 11 rounds of counting in the Shahdra constituency before the trend reversed and he managed to win by a margin of 5,294 votes. Mr. Goel gained 0.04 percentage point in vote share compared with the previous election. Health Minister Satyendra Jain more than doubled his margin of victory, retaining the Shakur Basti constituency with a margin of 7,592 votes the BJP’s S.C. Vats. Mr. Jain, who had won by 3,133 votes in 2015, improved his vote share by 2.93 percentage points.
Transport Minister Gehlot, who won from the Najafgarh constituency, was the biggest gainer in terms of vote share, improving on his previous victory by 15.24 percentage points. He improved his victory margin to 6,231 votes, from 1,555 votes in the 2015 election.
In Seemapuri, Minister of Tourism Rajendra Pal Gautam won by the largest vote margin among all ministers — at 56,108 and a 2.78 percentage point increase in vote share. In Balimaran, which witnessed the highest voter turnout among all constituencies at 71.58%, Minister of Food and Civil Supplies Imran Hussain won by a margin of 36,172 and improved his share of votes by 4.94 percentage points Minister of Labour Gopal Rai won the Babarpur seat by a margin of 33,062 and a 0.25 percentage point increase in vote share. And Chief Minister Kejriwal, who won by margin of 21,697 votes, saw a drop of 3.04 percentage points in vote share.