Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah cannot always help the BJP win assembly elections, the party’s ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) said in an editorial in its mouthpiece on Thursday, analysing the results of this month’s Delhi polls. The BJP was served a crushing defeat in the elections for the second consecutive time, increasing its tally from three to just eight seats, while Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) scooped up 62 of 70.
“…the apparent failure of BJP to revitalise the organisational structure at the grassroots level after 2015 and building up of the campaign on in the last leg of the elections were the two major reasons for defeat in the well-fought out battle,” the article in The Organiser said.
“But Narendra Modi and Amit Shah cannot always help out in the Assembly level elections and there is no option but to rebuild the organisation in Delhi to address the local aspirations of the masses is the clear message,” it added.
After one of the most vitriolic election campaigns in recent times that saw BJP leaders, including union ministers egging on crowds to chant hateful slogans like “shoot the traitors” and calling Mr Kejriwal a “terrorist”, the BJP was left licking its wounds in the Delhi polls just months after a clean sweep in the national elections.
Mr Kejriwal, 51, fought the election, held in the shadow of deadly protests against the PM Modi’s controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) law, on local issues such as the subsidised water and electricity he has introduced, as well as the safety of women.
The RSS said BJP’s promise of legalising about 1,700 unauthorised colonies benefitting about 40 lakh people did not make it through amid the gaps in its organisation that saw dozens of national ministers and leaders lead the campaign for the party while it avoided naming a direct opponent to Mr Kejriwal.