Rahul Gandhi offers to resign as Congress president after Lok Sabha poll debacle: Sources
In a shocking development after trends suggested a massive victory for the BJP-led NDA, which was leading on 351 of the 542 Lok Sabha seats, Rahul Gandhi is believed to have offered to resign as the party president.
According to reports, Rahul has put the proposal to quit as the party chief before his mother and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi.
However, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala refuted the reports as "incorrect".
When asked about fixing responsibility for loss, Rahul had said, "This is between my party and I. Between me and the Congress CWC."
The report came soon after Rahul, addressing a press conference, congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the victory.
He also conceded his defeat at the hands of BJP leader Smriti Irani in Amethi, which has been a Congress bastion for decades.
The trends available for the 542 seats which went to polls suggest a resounding victory for the NDA. The BJP alone has crossed the 300-mark -- a performance much better than its own tally of 282 in 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
If the trends stay until final results, the BJP would have improved on its 2014 performance when it had won 282 seats on its own in the 543-member Lok Sabha. Adding the seats won by its allies, the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance could win 343 seats, up from 336 in 2014.
In the politically critical state of Uttar Pradesh, where the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party combine had posed a stiff challenge, the BJP was leading in 56 of the 80 seats at stake. The SP was ahead in eight and BSP in 12. Although the BJP had won 72 seats in the last elections, the performance is much better than what many exit polls had forecast.
The Modi wave not only swept through the Hindi heartland and Gujarat, as was expected, but also rippled through West Bengal, Odisha, Maharashtra and Karnataka. Only Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh appeared untouched. Even in Telangana, where it was expected to fare poorly, the BJP was ahead in four seats, the same as the Telangana Rashtra Samiti.