Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi today hailed the party's showing in Karnataka polls, saying the result was a rejection of BJP's idealogy and suggested the same would be repeated in the Lok Sabha elections as well.
Singh praised the efforts of Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, saying he took a "leading role" in the campaigning for the polls held on Sunday last.
"It is a clear result against the ideology of the BJP which has been ruling in the state of Karnataka," Singh told reporters outside Parliament House as results from Karnataka polls showed that Congress was well on its way towards achieving a majority.
On the Lok Sabha elections, the Prime Minister said, "The people of the country know what is what and they will reject the BJP ideology as the result in Karnataka shows." He congratulated Congress workers in Karnataka for the outcome.
Sonia Gandhi, when asked to comment on the Karnataka result, said, "I am very happy with the victory in Karnataka. It was a joint effort."
Expressing confidence that Congress will get absolute majority in Karnataka, Finance Minister P Chidambaram promised that there will be a stable, progressive and hardworking government in the state for next five years.
The Congress leader also ruled out early general elections, saying the UPA government has a lot of work to complete.
"We are very happy that the people of Karnataka have voted the Congress party with an absolute majority... We can promise the people of Karnataka that we will give a stable government, a progressive government and a hard-working government in the next five years," Chidambaram said.
On the financial position in Karnataka, Chidambaram said, "We need to retrieve" it.
Asked whether there is any possibility of early general elections in the wake of Congress victory in Karnataka, Chidambaram said, "2014 is one year away. Let's look at the present now. There is a lot of work to be done... a lot of unfinished work between now and 2014."
He said the government has to take several executive and legislative actions in many fronts including economic reforms agenda and key bills.
"I think we should simply...do work. Parliament, MPs, state governments, ministers...all should do hardwork. Why talk about elections which is one year away," the Finance Minister said.
He said the government tried its best to pass the Food Security Bill and Land Acuqisition Bill but the opposition did not allow.
"We tried on Monday, we tried on Tuesday. What's the point of shouting and counter shouting. I think the decision (to adjourn Parliament sine die) was taken this morning, if we cannot pass any legislation adjourn the House sine die," Chidamabram said, adding the government should not be blamed for this.
Hailing the verdict in Karnataka, Congress leader Digvijay Singh said it is a victory of "inclusive ideology", and "defeat of communalism".
"It was not a fight of Narendra Modi versus Rahul Gandhi.
It was an ideological fight. It was the loss of communalism and victory of inclusive ideology. It was again proved that the party who will carry along all will rule the country," said the Congress General Secretary when asked whether Karnataka battle was a fight between Modi and Rahul.
Congress wrested power in Karnataka after seven years trouncing BJP in the assembly elections.
Congratulating the people of Karnataka, the Congress leader said, "They have taken a right decision at the right time."
Asked whether Congress will meet the same fate in the Lok Sabha elections since BJP lost in the assembly polls due to the corruption charges, Singh said, "BJP lost due to its own action. Then Karnataka is a secular state. In the last election we have committed some mistakes so there was some differences in the percentage of voting."
He described voting for the Congress as "positive" and said, "The increase of Congress vote percentage by 8 per cent is not a negative voting. It is positive voting."
On Modi he said, "Who knows Narendra Modi outside Gujarat? Even in Gujarat his performance is not very good and it has been stated by none other than Noble laureate Amartya Sen. Gujarat is behind in health and education sector."