NEW DELHI: Seeking to throw a protective ring around Rahul Gandhi, Congress today rejected suggestions that the party Vice President should accept blame for its debacle in four states.
“Every election has its own issues. We do not see state elections in terms of any individual – Tarun Gogoi or Oommen Chandy.
“We will analyze causes where we need to do better… We will discuss this in a cordial atmosphere,” the party’s Chief Spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told reporters along with General Secretary Mukul Wasnik and spokesman RPN Singh.
Surjewala said he “rejects this improper suggestion totally”, when asked whether Rahul should accept responsibility like he and Congress President Sonia Gandhi did after the Lok Sabha polls in which the party had its worst performance – just 44 seats in a House of 543.
He said it should be noted that Congress had been in power in Assam for 15 years and for the last five years in Kerala and had provided capable leadership.
He dismissed an “irrelevant” a query that whether Priyanka Gandhi would be playing a greater role in the organization following the reverses.
“Every election has different issues and they should not be seen linked to any individual,” he said in reply to a volley of questions whether Rahul would accept responsibility.
Rahul said, “We accept the verdict of the people with humility. My best wishes to the parties that have won the elections.
“I take this opportunity to thank every Congress worker and leader and our allies for their effort during these elections. We will work harder till we win the confidence & trust of people,” he said in a post on Twitter.
The reaction came soon after election trends in five states suggested that Congress had lost in Kerala and Assam ruled by it and failed to make a dent in West Bengal and Tamil Nadu despite alliances.
Wasnik admitted that the party had “expected a better performance”.
Replying to questions, Wasnik, who was also incharge of party affairs in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry, said it was not possible to immediately identify the causes for the losses in these states.
Surjewala criticized BJP’s campaign of ‘Congress mukt Bharat’, saying that Congress is linked to the soul of India and no organization or individual would be able to wipe it out.
“Congress is not only a political party but an ideology, a thought, a way of life – which permeates the soul of the nation. Neither BJP, nor any individual can destroy it,” he said.–PTI