Congress leaders to do introspection to prepare for general elections

: The Delhi Assembly election results have apparently brought its own worries for the Congress in the State. Except for Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Ramesh Chennithala, none of the senior Congress leaders, including Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, came out with their reactions on the results to the Assembly elections in four States, including Delhi.

Even Mr. Chennithala was cautious in his remarks, stating that all parties should pay heed to the results of the Delhi Assembly polls. Reacting to the election results, he said he did not consider the outcome as an indicator of what was in store for his party in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, but the United Democratic Front (UDF) and the Congress would conduct a discussion leading to an introspection of sorts in order to prepare for the general polls.

Mr. Chandy did not react to the election results, firmly believing that it was for the Central leaders to respond. Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) leader P.K. Kunhalikutty said the election results were a lesson for the UDF to function in a disciplined and united manner.

Some of the Congress leaders viewed the Delhi results in the context of the general view in civil society in Kerala that the CPI (M) and the Congress were hand in glove on several major issues. The failure of the party and the government to promptly respond to the Kozhikode iron ore mining issue, the developments in the T.P. Chandrasekharan murder case and several other instances in the recent past had led to this general feeling.

Taking a cue from the major issues raised by the AAP in Delhi, these leaders felt that the UDF should take a strong stand on corruption. When the UDF came to power, it had laid emphasis on transparency and good governance, but of late these concepts had taken a back seat, they said.

Another major worry for the Congress following the results is the assertiveness displayed by its coalition partners, which, party leaders feel, would embolden them raise their pitch.

The IUML leaders have already started sharply criticising the Congress party, even questioning the capabilities of the some of its Central leaders.