'We Don't Do Politics of Hate': Manoj Tiwari Accepts Defeat as BJP is Reduced to Single Digit in Delhi Polls
Taking full responsibility of his party's poor show, Tiwari said his future role in the party is an internal matter.
Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari
New Delhi: Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari on Tuesday said the party will review why it failed to meet its own expectations in the Assembly polls and saw a moral victory in the fact that the party's vote share has increased since 2015. Taking full responsibility of his party's poor show, Tiwari said his future role in the party is an internal matter.
"Delhi must have given mandate after careful thinking. Our vote percentage has increased from 32% to around 38%. Delhi did not reject us and the increase (in vote share) is a good sign for us," he said.
Tiwari said the BJP hopes there will be less blame game and more work in the national capital and congratulated Arvind Kejriwal on his party's victory in the polls.
“Thank you to all the voters of Delhi. Thank you to all the party workers for their hard work. We respect the mandate of people. Arvind Kejriwal, congratulations to you," he posted on Twitter in Hindi.
Tiwari had asserted that his party will win more than 45 seats in the 70-member Assembly and form the government. Addressing the media, he said the BJP "never did politics of hate".
"We couldn't perform well, we'll evaluate this. Sometimes we get discouraged when results are not as per our expectations but I would like to tell our workers to not be disheartened...Compared to 2015 our winning percentage has increased," he said.
On being asked if he considered stepping down after the BJP's defeat, he said, "It is an internal party matter. I will let you know if anything like that happens."
Out of the eight Assembly seats the BJP won, three were under Tiwari's Lok Sabha constituency North East Delhi. The party won four seats in East Delhi constituency represented by BJP MP Gautam Gambhir and one in South Delhi represented by party MP Ramesh Bidhuri. In the remaining four Lok Sabha constituencies, the party was routed by the AAP.
Each of the seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi comprise 10 Assembly segments.
Tiwari, who fought the Lok Sabha elections as a Samajwadi Party candidate in 2009 against Yogi Adityanath in Gorakhpur, joined the BJP ahead of the 2013 Assembly polls.
The next year, he was fielded by the BJP from North East Delhi, winning the seat. In November 2016, he was given responsibility to head the Delhi BJP owning to his Purvanchali background.
The term of the Delhi BJP president is for three years — Tiwari has already completed his stipulated tenure and is currently on extension, said a BJP leader.
Party sources claimed Tiwari could be replaced with a new face and he might be given some other responsibility in the party or the government at the Centre.
Leading the BJP that was out of power in Delhi for over two decades, Tiwari had earlier tweeted that the party will form the government by winning 48 seats and dared his critics to save his tweet.
Tiwari laughed off his tweet, saying he had tried to boost the morale of the party workers through his assertion.
"I am the state president, so I take the responsibility for this defeat. My estimate based on some factors has proved wrong but what possibly could you do with my tweet, just keep it saved," he said when asked about his tweet.
The BJP, which is out of power in Delhi for more than two decades, won just three seats in the 2015 Assembly elections.
The AAP on Tuesday registered wins in at least 10 constituencies till late afternoon, with its prominent faces Manish Sisodia, Atishi and Raghav Chadha emerging victorious from their respective constituencies.
The AAP appeared to be heading back to power for a second term in Delhi, with the party leading in 63 of the total 70 seats, and the BJP ahead in seven seats, according to the Election Commission figures.
The elections to the Delhi Legislative Assembly were held on February 8.
(With inputs from PTI)
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