Dikshit downplays party’s poor showing in civic elections

NEW DELHI, Apr 18: As Congress received a drubbing in the Delhi municipal polls, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today sought to downplay the party’s poor showing saying it was civic elections and could not be compared with anything else.
In her first comments after the party lost to BJP in all the three Corporations in Delhi, Dikshit said, “This was not my election. It was the MCD elections.
“When our (Assembly) elections come, we will see. If there were some shortcomings, we will rectify it. We have improved our tally. Corrective steps will be taken,” she told reporters here.
Her remarks were in contrast to East Delhi MP and her son Sandeep Dikshit who attributed the defeat to an anti-Congress mood generated by scams like 2G and price rise and a disconnect between people and the government.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said there are winners and losers in every election and one has to accept it with good grace. “These are local elections, local issues, people who work for the people. These are the qualities that count. In every election, there are winners and losers and one has to accept it with good grace,” he said.
The BJP victory was a rude shock to Dikshit who has been ruling the capital for the last nearly 14 years uninterruptedly and trifurcated the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) in a bid to weaken the saffron party’s hold.
She had overcome the resistance of a number of senior party leaders who had warned that splitting the 53 year-old body ahead of the polls will cost the party dearly.
Dikshit, who had addressed series of rallies across the city and campaigned hard for the polls, had ruled out price rise highlighted by BJP as an issue but it now appears that the Chief Minister’s assessment was not entirely correct.
Dikshit said Congress’ seats as well as vote share have increased.
“It is no one’s responsibility. Our seats and voteshare have increased. BJP has won by a narrow margin. We will have to deliberate on all these details,” she said.
Asked whether trifurcation of MCD was not benefetial for Congress, she said the trifurcation would not benefit the party but it will benefit Delhi administration.
She said price rise was an issue though MCD has no relation with it and wondered whether corruption in MCD was lesser an issue. (PTI)