Three days after having suffered an ignominious rout, three days after enduring calls for a surgery by senior Congress leaders, the Congress party today defended the debacle through some counter-intuitive logic. Actually poll math.
Through some deft number crunching Rahul’s spokespersons sought to prove that not Congress-mukt Bharat but BJP-mukt Bharat was close to becoming a reality.
This sums up the problem confronting the Congress party – which data to go by? The fact it has been reduced to a dismal 44 seats in the Lok Sabha tally or the seats it is picking up in state polls at a higher strike rate than the BJP.
While Congress’s conversion rate may be higher, the sum total of its efforts hasn’t added up to the party winning states. In fact since 2014 the party has lost 7 states. In 2014 it was the ruling party in 13 states and now that number has come down to 6.
What makes the problem worse for the Congress is the steady rise of the BJP under Prime Minister Modi and BJP president Amit Shah. The victories augur well for the BJP and the fact that it has come at Congress’s expense is even more politically significant. It is for these reasons that experts accuse the Congress of being in denial.