The spate of poor electoral run continued for the beleagured Congress as party candidates fared pathetically in its pocket burroughs of Amethi and Rae Bareli. With this, the demand of the immediate removal of state chief Raj Babbar gained momentum on Friday evening.
This is the second dismal performance of Congress since Babbar took charge after a complete rout in 2014 Parliament elections. In the March Assembly poll, the party could only manage sevcen seats while in 2012 Assembly polls, it had 29 legislators including an Independent supported by them.
In Amethi - Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi’s constituency, the party could not win a single seat of chairperson in the four town areas (nagar panchayats).
What is more it slipped from the runners up slot in the last two civic polls to a frustrating third, just ahead of Bahujan Samaj Party.
In Rae Bareli -the Parliamentary constituency of Congress president Sonia Gandhi too, a party candidate won a municipality chairperson’s seat, but lost in other eight town areas or nagar panchayats.
In Amethi, while BJP won two posts of chairman, one each was shared by Samajwadi Party and Independent candidates. The Amethi nagar panchayat chairperson post was won by BJP candidate Chandrama Devi while Musafirkhana nagar panchayat chairperson post was bagged by Independent Brajesh Agrahari. Ironically, in Amethi and Musafirkhana nagar panchayat polls, the party did not field any candidate.
The Jais nagar panchayat chairperson’s post went to the BJP while the Gauriganj nagar panchayat chairperson’s seat was won by SP’s Rajpati Pasi. In most seats, Congress candidates came second or third.
In Rae Bareli, Congress candidate Purnima Srivastava won the chairperson’s post of Rae Bareli municipal council defeating her nearest rival SP candidate Naseem Bano by over 5,200 votes while BJP candidate Sonia Rastogi came third.
However, in eight town area chairperson’s post, the Congress failed to open the account. While Independents won a maximum of four posts of chairperson, BJP and SP shared two each.
Post it humiliating drubbing, the Congress blamed the state government for managing the victory for BJP. ``large scale irregularities, massive misuse of government machinery, tampering of EVMs etc contributed to BJP’s victory,” the party claimed in an official release adding that even after bunglings, the Congress gained in vote percentage.