Dehradun: A day when BJP swept across regions, Uttarakhand had no different story to share. The saffron party won all five seats disappointing Congress contenders including former CM Harish Rawat.
Reacting to the developments, Uttarakhand Congress president Pritam Singh dismissed possibilities of sabotage. He said, “I don’t understand what went wrong but I am certain there was no back stabbing.” Singh lost from Tehri parliamentary constituency.
According to reports, Congress was expecting to win at least one seat in the hilly state but the strong undercurrent in favour of Modi swept results for BJP.
In 2014 too, BJP had won all five seats. The average winning margin for BJP candidates crossed over two lakh votes in 2019.
Congress’ disappointment continued as former chief minister Harish Rawat lost from Nainital where he was pitted against BJP state president Ajay Bhatt. Rawat lost to Bhatt by a margin of 3 lakh votes.
Rawat blamed EVMs for his loss. “Otherwise what was the reason that I could not get votes even from the Congress strongholds,” he said to News18. Political experts feel that Rawat’s defeat will further weaken his position in the party. The octogenarian leader was so sure of his “strong” position that he even refused to hold a rally of any member from the Gandhi family in his constituency. Rawat was eyeing 2022 assembly polls but with the present loss, his plans look a constant dream.
Three years ago, it was Rawat whose ‘style’ of functioning as chief minister had led to major defection in the party. 10 legislators of Congress had then joined BJP.
Political analyst Sunil Pande says Congress failed to compensate the loss it faced from the exit of its top leadership. “BJP gained in a big way in 2017 polls and with the rout in this elections, Congress will be further weakened”.
With almost nonexistent cadre and grassroot level organisation, it will be a herculean task for Congress to take on the resurgent BJP in the coming days.