Although election rallies and road shows by its top leaders — Sonia and Rahul Gandhi — attracted massive crowds, the Congress will find it difficult to even improve its dismal tally that it got in the 2013 elections, the party’s internal survey has shown.
Several opinion polls have predicted that the grand-old party may not even be able to retain eight seats that it won in 2013. Now, the internal survey, according to party sources, shows that it is unlikely to put up a fight in 54 of the 70 assembly seats.
On the remaining 16, too, it could only hope for the best with the contest going to the wire.
In 2013, the party scored its worst-ever tally in Delhi elections with its vote share dropping from 40% in 2008 to 25%. The party’s traditional vote base among the poor, Dalits and minorities shifted to the debutante AAP, which won a spectacular 28 seats.
The party had been hoping that it would make a comeback in the Lok Sabha elections in April 2014. But arch-rival BJP cornered all seven seats. Four of its sitting MPs forfeited their security deposit.
The pre-poll have showed that the party has failed to win over its traditional voters.
The internal survey shows that Congress party’s support has gone further down in areas that have large population of poor and Dalits. The Congress had won only one of the 12 reserved seats in 2013 and the results are likely to be no different this time.
“Some of our candidates have two-three term MLAs but they lost election due to a anti-Congress wave in 2013. These candidates have done tremendous work in their areas in the past few years. We hope some of them will manage to win back their seats,” said a senior party leader.