Raipur: Chief Minister Raman Singh on Tuesday tendered his resignation to Governor Anandiben Patel after Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) stunning defeat in Assembly polls. Addressing the media, Singh said, “We respect the mandate that the public has given. I congratulate Congress on this success. I consider it my luck to serve the public of Chhattisgarh for the last 15 years.”
He further said, “I take the responsibility for this defeat because the poll was contested under my leadership. We will act as a strong Opposition and work for the development of the state.”
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) bit the dust in its bastion as it refused to honour its commitment to help out farmers in a state which is categorised the rice bowl of the country. And insiders admitted that the arrogance and deep-rooted corruption in the rank and file of the BJP government scripted its crushing defeat.
Former Chief Minister Ajit Jogi, who aligned with the BSP and the CPI in a bid to win a few seats to use it as a bargaining chip in the case of a hung Assembly, was left high and dry because of the landslide victory of the Congress.
The Congress is expected to win a two-thirds majority in the 90-member Assembly. With counting over in only one seat, officials said the BJP tally was expected to drop steeply from 49 in the outgoing house to 18 or 19 while the Congress strength would zoom from 39 to 45-50.
Analysts say that the Congress promise to write off bank loans of farmers within 10 days of coming to power and give a massive hike in minimum support price (MSP) and slash power tariff up to 50 percent were the prime reasons for the Congress win and the downfall of BJP’s longest-serving Chief Minister Raman Singh, who began his political career in 1983 as a councillor.
Bhupesh Baghel, the Congress prime face for Chief Ministerial candidate and incumbent Pradesh Congress Committee chief, said, “It’s a decisive mandate for the Congress to restore quality governance in Chhattisgarh. People wanted to change as the BJP fooled every community.”
He credited the win to the leadership of Congress President Rahul Gandhi.
The victory in the Congress has already set off serious competition among five key contenders for the Chief Minister’s post.
The humiliating defeat of the BJP in a state has 20 percent of India’s coal and iron ore reserves are expected to unleash open infighting in the party.