New Delhi: The party that ruled Delhi for 15 years, touched a record low, when it not only failed to open its account in the Delhi elections, but lost their deposits in 63 constituencies.

Only three Congress candidates could save their deposits. Out of the 70 seats, the Congress contested in 66 constituencies, while leaving four for its ally, the Rashtriya Janata Dal. What was worse for the Congress is that it managed to bag a vote share of just 4.26% as opposed to the 53.57% and 38.51% bagged by the Aam Admi Party and the BJP respectively.

Forfeiting deposit:

Out of the 66 candidates fielded by the Congress, only Arvind Singh Lovely from Gandhi Nagar, Devender Yadav from Badli and Abhishek Dutt from Kasturba Nagar could save their deposits. When a candidate fails to get one sixth of the total valid votes in a constituency, he or she forfeits deposit.

This dismal performance led to Delhi Mahila Congress chief and party spokesperson, Sharmistha Mukherjee saying that the party is decimated once again in Delhi. Enough of introspection, time for action now. Inordinate delay in decision making at the top level, lack of strategy and unity at the state level, demotivated workers, no grassroots connect are all factors, she said while also taking responsibility for the defeat.

Dynasty politics failed:

Most of the Congress candidates got less than 5% of the total votes that were polled in their respective constituencies. Shivani Chopra, the daughter of Delhi Congress chief, Shubhash Chopra could not save her deposit. Priyanka Singh, the daughter of former Delhi Assembly speaker, Yoganand Shastri forfeited her deposit and managed to clock just 3.6% of the votes.
Poonam Azad, wife of the party’s campaign committee chairman, Kirti Azad was routed after she polled just 2,604 or 2.23% of the votes. The only saving grace for the party was Arvind Singh Lovely, with 19.14% votes, Devendra Yadav at 19.66 and Abhishek Dutt, with 12.42% votes. However, all of them stood a distant third in the elections.

Minority appeasement fails:

The Congress has been appeasing the minority community by spreading a false narrative about the newly amended citizenship law. It has been speaking about the new law and also in favour of those persons who instigated violence at the Jamia Millia. 

The Congress would have hoped that it did well in minority-dominated constituencies. However, it failed badly and ended up a distant third. Former Delhi minister, Haroon Yusuf, who contested from the Ballimaran constituency ended up with just 4.73% of the votes.

Analysts told MyNation, the party has been completely routed due to lack of strategy, infighting, etc. What must be noted here is that the Congress, which has a pan India presence has of late taking happiness in the BJP’s defeat. Further, it has an approach that winning and losing are part of elections. It also has made its campaign centred around just bashing Prime Minister Narendra Modi, analysts further stated.

No show by the Gandhis:

There has been a consistent dip in the performance of the Congress in Delhi. In the 2013 elections, the party polled 24.55% of the votes. In 2015, the party’s vote percentage stood at 9.7% and by 2020, it has dropped to 4.26%.

The Congress appeared to be riding on the fact that in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, it managed to garner 24.55% of the votes. The AAP was pushed to a distant third in the 2019 polls, where Delhi was concerned. 

The Gandhis, on the other hand, who focused their campaign around the PM, were unable to deliver for their party. Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi addressed rallies at Chandni Chowk, Jangpura, Sangam Vihar and Kondli. In all these constituencies, the Congress candidates were not just defeated, but lost their deposits as well.