LS Poll results: Rahul Gandhi concedes defeat, congratulate PM Modi

NEW DELHI: Congress President Rahul Gandhi accepted the shocking defeat and congratulate Narendra Modi and his party for the victory.

Addressing a brief press conference at the party headquarters here as the results trickled in, Gandhi also conceded defeat in the Amethi Lok Sabha constituency, the pocket borough of his family, and congratulated Union Minister Smriti Irani for the victory.

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He, however, refused to state what went wrong for the party, and suggested that the Congress Working Committee (CWC) would decide whether he would continue as the party chief.

“It’s between me and the party and me and the CWC,” he said when asked whether he would step down.

“I had said during campaign that ‘janata maalik hai’ (people are the decision-makers) and the ‘maalik’ has given the verdict,” Gandhi said.

“First of all, I want to congratulate Modiji and the BJP. We have to accept that Modiji has won this election,” the Congress President said.

After conceding defeat in Amethi, Rahul Gandhi said that Union Minister Smriti Irani should take care of Amethi. “I congratulate Smriti Irani and hope she fulfils the people‚Äôs trust and treats the constituency with love,” he said.

Rahul Gandhi lost his traditional Amethi seat to Irani, by a margin of 38,449 votes.

Irani polled 3,11,992 votes while Gandhi, who had been winning the seat since 2004, got only 2,73,543 votes.

He said his party’s fight against the BJP was ideological and it will continue.

Gandhi also asked the party cadres to keep fighting for the Congress ideology.

Congress General Secretary for UP east, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra also accept people’s verdict and congratulate PM Modi and BJP workers.

In a stunning electoral showing, the BJP led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi was on Thursday set to retain power for another five years after making a sweep of the Lok Sabha battle and mauling the opposition.

So stunning was the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) showing that it bulldozed the opposition even where it had looked strong, virtually sweeping entire states in northern India and even beyond and making unprecedented inroads in Trinamool Congress-ruled West Bengal.

Trends from the counting centres showed that the BJP alone was set to bag 298 seats — more than the 282 it won in 2014, catapulting Modi as Prime Minister for the first time.

Along with its allies, the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) could end up with 343 of the 542 Lok Sabha seats where polling took place.

With agency inputs

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