After a humiliating drubbing in Gujarat local body elections, state Congress chief and Leader of Opposition resign

Amit Chavda(L) and Paresh Dhanani(R) (Source: TV9 Gujarati)

Taking responsibility for the embarrassing defeat in the recently concluded local body polls in Gujarat, Gujarat Congress chief Amit Chavda and Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani Gujarat Congress chief Amit Chavda and Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani have tendered their resignations. However, both will continue on their post until the party top leadership finds their suitable replacements.

The party has accepted the resignation of the two leaders and requested them to continue till the end of March, as the state assembly session is underway, a report published in DeshGujarat said.

Chavda had expressed shock at the results of the local body polls, claiming that the party was receiving a good response from the people. He even blamed the EVMs for the Congress party’s poll debacle.

“The election results are totally opposite to what our expectations were. We had received good responses from people during our campaigning but the results do not reflect it. People have raised doubts on EVMs and all these things should be probed,” Chavda said.

In December 2019, the Congress party had indicated that there would be an imminent change in the party leadership. However, with the local body polls slated to occur in late February, the decision to bring in new leadership was shelved until after the local elections. Following Congress’ disastrous performance in the local body elections and the subsequent resignation of the Gujarat Congress party chief, a change in the guard is inevitable.

Earlier last week, Gujarat Congress working President Hardik Patel expressed his displeasure over the functioning of the party. He had then alleged that the Congress party was not using him to his potential. The Patidar leader claimed Congress had not organised a single public meeting for him ahead of the local body elections.

Congress wiped out as BJP sweeps local body polls in Gujarat

The crisis facing the Congress party precipitated in the wake of the Gujarat local body polls. The BJP has won all 31 seats, a majority of 81 municipalities, and over 200 of the 230 talukas that had gone to the polls on February 28. The emphatic victory came a week after the saffron party swept all six municipal corporations.

This is in stark contrast to the 2015 local body polls when Congress had made impressive gains on the back of the Patidar agitation that had roiled the state. The BJP had then faced a thorough pasting in 24 of the 31 district panchayats, along with losing 138 of the total 228 taluka panchayats. The party had, however, maintained its semi-urban base intact by winning 45 of the 57 municipalities.

The Congress party, on the other hand, could win only 1,768 seats, three municipalities and a few taluka panchayat bodies. It failed to open its account in any district panchayat.

OpIndia Staff: Staff reporter at OpIndia