New Delhi: Delhi Congress chief Sheila Dikshit on Tuesday appealed to party president Rahul Gandhi to withdraw his decision to step down, saying the party has bounced back in the past from challenging circumstances to triumph.
The Congress faces a critical crisis with Gandhi staying firm on his decision to quit after the poll debacle.
The party won only 52 Lok Sabha seats and its governments in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan face an uncertain future. "Under the dynamic leadership of Indira Gandhi, the Congress party fought back from the setback in the 1977 Lok Sabha elections to wrest power two-and-a-half years later, and the party remained in power for several years thereafter," Dikshit said in a statement.
Delhi Congress was firmly with Rahul Gandhi in this challenging time for the party, she said. "There was no need for the Congress president and the party workers to get disheartened by the setbacks in the Lok Sabha elections," she said, appealing Gandhi to withdraw his decision to step down as party president.
Under Dikshit's leadership, the Congress was routed in Delhi by the BJP which won all seven Lok Sabha seats with huge margins. The Congress, however, managed to replace AAP as runners up on five of the seven seats. Dikshit herself lost to her BJP counterpart and sitting MP Manoj Tiwari by a margin of over 3.66 lakh votes from North East Delhi.
Dikshit said the Congress candidates finished second in five of the seven Lok Sabha constituencies in Delhi, and the party also came first in five assembly segments and second in 42 others.
The three-time former Delhi chief minister lamented that under the AAP regime, development works have "come to a halt" in the city.
Dikshit said the Congress workers will go to the people with a positive agenda to win back their trust and confidence, and the party will bounce back in the upcoming assembly elections in Delhi in 2020.
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