The Congress office in central Delhi bore a deserted look as the counting trends kept throwing up dismal numbers on Thursday for the party across all five states where it fought the polls, including Punjab where it is ceding control to the Aam Aadmi Party.
For most of the day, there were few Congress leaders in sight to offer a possible explanation of what went wrong. There were just a handful of media crews present, spread across the sprawling green ground of the party office. More journalists started pouring in as the day progressed.
After the results became clear around 4pm, Congress general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala said that the party stands in solidarity with the people of India, irrespective of whether it wins or loses an election.
“We completely bow before the people’s court,” he said while addressing the media.
About the Congress’s loss in Punjab, he said that the party could not overcome the anti-incumbency of four and a half years under Captain Amarinder Singh and thus voters chose AAP for a change.
Earlier in the morning, a dozen political workers led by the president of an entity called Priyanka and Rahul Gandhi Sena, Jagdish Sharma, staged a small demonstration outside the party office, shouting slogans on the alleged tampering of electronic voting machines (EVMs).
“Even Lord Vishnu cannot defeat Modi as long as EVMs are there,” he claimed.
But that demonstration, too, fizzled out quickly, in about 15 minutes.
A Congress leader who was present at the office told News18 on the condition of anonymity that Goa’s results were surprising for the party.
Talking about Punjab, the leader said that voters never want a vacuum.
“There was a vacuum in Punjab and AAP realised that and shaped its campaign just in line with that. They sought one chance from the voters and with a big vacuum in place, they made the most of it,” he said.
For Uttarakhand, which the Congress was hopeful of winning, the leader said that the “beneficiary constituency" was underestimated by the party and that perhaps led to its loss.
Read all minute-by-minute news updates for Uttar Pradesh election results 2022, Punjab election results 2022, Uttarakhand election results 2022, Manipur election results 2022, and Goa election results 2022.
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