Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Raj Babbar on Friday sent his resignation to Rahul Gandhi, a day after the party’s dismal performance in the Lok Sabha elections in the state. Babbar lost the election from the Fatehpur Sikri parliamentary constituency.
Uttar Pradesh sends 80 parliamentarians, the most in the country, to the Lok Sabha. The National Democratic Alliance won 64 seats in the battleground state while the sole Congress winner was Sonia Gandhi in Rae Bareli, where her victory margin was 1.67 lakh votes. The only other Congress MP from 2014 – her son and party chief Rahul Gandhi – lost family bastion Amethi to BJP leader Smriti Irani.
On Friday morning, Babbar said the results in the state were depressing for the Congress. “I find myself guilty of not discharging my responsibility in a proper manner,” he tweeted. “I will meet the leadership and apprise it of my views.”
Congress state unit spokesperson Rajiv Bakshi told PTI that Babbar had sent his resignation to the party president.
Meanwhile, the Congress president in Odisha, Niranjan Patnaik, also announced his resgination from the post following the party’s debacle in the General Elections as well as the state Assembly elections. The Congress managed to win only one Lok Sabha seat and nine Assembly seats in the state.
“While the Congress faced defeat in the state, I too lost at the hustings,” Patnaik told reporters, according to PTI. A Congress committee, headed by senior leader Narasingha Mishra, has been set up to examine the reason for the party’s poor show, he added.
Patnaik admitted that the Congress had failed to win people’s confidence. “The party needs to take concrete steps to set the organisation in proper shape by getting rid of opportunists and attracting youths into its fold,” he added.
Karnataka Congress campaign manager HK Patil has also offered to resign, NDTV reported.
Congress Working Committee meeting on Saturday
The Congress Working Committee will reportedly meet at 11 am on Saturday to discuss the party’s poll drubbing. There has been speculation that Rahul Gandhi will offer to resign from his post at the meeting.
The Congress managed to bag only 52 seats in the elections. It has not won enough seats to claim the post of the Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha for the second straight General Elections.
Addressing reporters on Thursday soon after the electoral trends suggested that the NDA would return to power, Gandhi took 100% responsibility for the party’s defeat. He said the Congress Working Committee would decide on his future. When asked whether he would offer to resign, he replied, “That you can leave between me and the Working Committee.”