09/05/2019 6:24 PM IST

Can Ajay Maken Take Back New Delhi From Meenakshi Lekhi?

Maken had stepped down as Delhi Congress chief in January 2019.

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Congress leader Ajay Maken is contesting from the New Delhi constituency where he is facing off against BJP’s Meenakshi Lekhi this election. Maken had lost to Lekhi in 2014 but has won the Lok Sabha seat twice before, in 2004 and 2009.

Maken, who was chief of the Delhi Congress, had stepped down from the post in January 2019.

Maken was reportedly a big supporter of an alliance between the Congress and AAP in Delhi for the Lok Sabha polls. The talks fell through.

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In an interview to Hindustan Times, Maken later said, “If there had been an alliance, we would have won on all seven Delhi seats by margins of 2-3 lakh each. Now, we won’t win all seven seats and the margins will be smaller.”

But he said, Congress was in a direct fight with the BJP.

Maken has claimed there’s massive discontent among government employees over the seventh pay commission recommendations.

He’s also claimed to be the first person in the country to include environment in his 2004 poll campaign and said he accords priority to pollution as an election issue.

Maken has sought to leverage maximum traction out of social media.

“My voters have made me victorious in three out of four re-elections from the same constituency! Reason is Simple-I never lose touch and am easily accessible for development works!,” he tweeted recently while sharing a video of a meeting with people in a locality.

Maken has said AAP’s promise of full statehood for Delhi would be a disaster and the law and order in Delhi will become “as bad as Uttar Pradesh or Bihar”.

Maken said Congress supports the Delhi government having full administrative powers, barring three things the areas of land, law and order and police. He also said the Lieutenant Governor should act on the aid and advice of the council of ministers.

(With PTI inputs)