NEW DELHI: Poor performance of councillors, ‘excessive involvement’ of prabharis (senior leaders from other states), delay in unveiling the manifesto and ‘bad choices’ (read: selection of candidates). These were the salient points that came out of a series of BJP meetings held on Friday to review its performance in the recently-concluded Assembly elections.
In one of the meetings, Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari met all the city leaders and workers, seeking their feedback on the party’s defeat in the high-stakes polls, in the presence of the party’s national general secretaries Arun Singh and Anil Jain, the Delhi unit’s secretary (organisation) Siddharthan.
Another meeting was also attended by Union minister Nityanand Rai, who was co-in-charge of local unit for the elections. The majority of Delhi leaders were also critical of the finalisation of candidates at the eleventh hour.
“Many said anti-incumbency against our councillors cost us in the elections. Another issue, which frequently came during the deliberations, was the appointment of prabharis. Our local leaders were caught up arranging their stays. More often than not, they were busy making arrangements for them, thereby taking their eye off the campaign,” said a BJP leader, who was in-charge of electioneering in one of the 70 constituencies.
During a closed-door discussion, some BJP workers said that the party’s ploy of holding small meetings, featuring top leaders such as Union Home Minister Amit Shah and national president JP Nadda, failed.
However, a section of party leaders termed the ‘review exercise’ a ‘worthless effort’.
“These meetings are nothing but sham attempts to keep ground-level workers motivated,” said a senior BJP functionary. Without sharing the minutes of the meetings, Tiwari said that the party has begun preparations for the next elections. “We are in the process of deciding what needs to be done in the next five years,” he said.