The two-member Congress Committee probing the reasons behind the defeat of their President Rahul Gandhi in his family borough Amethi, has been told that the non-cooperation of the Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party units was responsible for the defeat.
Congress Secretaries Zubair Khan and K.L. Sharma, who are UPA chaiperson Sonia Gandhi’s representatives in Rae Bareli, were informed in “clear terms” that the SP and BSP units in Amethi did not cooperate with Congress and a large segment of their voters went with BJP.
“It is simple arithmetic. Rahul Gandhi got more votes in 2019 (4.13 lakhs) than he did in 2014 (4.08 lakh votes). The BSP candidate in 2014 had polled 57,716 votes and if these votes had come to the Congress, the party would have won. BJP’s Smriti Irani defeated rahul Gandhi by a margin of over 55,000 votes,” said a local Congress leader.
Amethi district Congress chief Yogendra Misra also supported the charge that the SP and BSP did not cooperate with the Congress even though their leaders had announced support for Rahul Gandhi.
“Former SP Minister Gayatri Prajapati’s son Anil Prajapati openly campaigned for Smriti Irani. SP MLA from Gauriganj, Rakesh Singh, went with the BJP in order to save the position of his block pramukhs and zila panchayat members,” said Yogendra Misra.
Rakesh Singh, the SP MLA, however, denied the charge.
Rahul Gandhi had lost in four assembly segments of Amethi and the margin of defeat was highest (18,000 votes) in Gauriganj. He led in Amethi but trailed in Tiloi, Jagdishpur and Salon Assembly segments.
The two-member committee has taken feedback from Gauriganj and Tiloi party workers and will be meeting the workers in Jagdishpur, Salon and Amethi over the next two days.
The final report would be submitted to the Congress high command next week.
The defeat of Rahul Gandhi in Amethi has shaken up the Congress since the constituency was considered a Congress bastion since 1980.