NEW DELHI: Despite making several changes in their strategy and even bringing new leaders to lead the fight in the Assembly polls, both the BJP and the Congress were decimated in Delhi.
If the BJP took solace behind figures saying its voteshare saw only a marginal drop, the Congress had no place to hide as its vote share was reduced from 24 per cent in the last Assembly elections to a mere 9.7 per cent this time.
The BJP’s Central Parliamentary Board is likely to meet here on Friday, after party chief Amit Shah returns from Ahmedabad to take stock of the situation and analyse the results.
Sources pointed out that the 12-member board, which includes PM Narendra Modi, Shah and senior ministers Rajnath Singh, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Ananth Kumar, J P Nadda and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan, is likely to review the results and consider the possible reasons for the loss.
BJP insiders say given such a result, no action may immediately be taken against anyone in the party, as it would lead to washing dirty linen in the public. The BJP campaign was centrally managed by senior leaders, including Shah, Jaitley, Ananth Kumar, Piyush Goyal, Dharmendra Pradhan and Nirmala Sitharaman.
However, voices of dissent have already started emanating from the party. On the day the BJP faced a rout, party MP Kirti Azad had demanded that “heads must rolls” as those responsible for the rot should be held responsible for the failure.
Sources also pointed out that changes in the party’s organisation may be done as expansion and rejig in Shah’s team is long overdue. Shah may also be forced to bring new faces to lead in election-bound states.
The BJP’s ideological parent RSS too is collating feedback from its cadre to assess the reasons for the loss. From Thursday onwards, state Congress chief Arvinder Singh Lovely will appraise the state Congress leaders about the party’s strategy and agenda for the coming years. Maken had resigned as the AICC general secretary. Lovely also resigned from his position. The party high command has not yet accepted their resignation nor any communication has been sent to the two. Though Maken took responsibility of the party performance, he is unlikely to be replaced as the party do not have leader of his stature in Delhi.