BHUBANESWAR: Three months after the humiliating defeat in the Assembly and Lok Sabha elections, the Congress on Wednesday admitted that infighting among leaders cost the party dearly in the polls.
“Most of the district presidents in their feedback have blamed internal conflict in the party as the main reason for the party’s defeat in the State,” AICC general secretary in-charge of Odisha, BK Hariprasad, told reporters here.
Hariprasad and AICC secretary Shubhankar Sarkar met presidents of 33 organisational districts of the party on Wednesday separately and recorded their views on the party’s poor performance.
They will be meeting the defeated candidates of the party on Thursday to find out the reasons behind such an unprecedented defeat.
While several district presidents blamed the State leadership for lack of coordination among top leaders during electioneering, others reportedly found fault with the selection of candidates and delay in distribution of tickets.
The exercise of seeking feedback is done with an intention of preparing a road map and action plan to revive the organisation, Hariprasad said, adding they will consult Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi before preparing a strategy for the State.
Though Congress fielded candidates in all 147 Assembly segments, only 16 of them won the elections while the party lost from all 21 Lok Sabha seats.
Meanwhile, former chief minister Hemananda Biswal disapproved of the feedback taking exercise.
“I do not think there is any significance of this exercise after the Antony Committee submitted its report to Congress president Sonia Gandhi,” Biswal said. Biswal told reporters that he had met Sonia Gandhi at Delhi on Wednesday and urged her to appoint a senior leader having wide experience as the new OPCC president.