Ahmedabad/Shimla: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday thanked the people of Gujarat for blessing the politics of development and delivering "phenomenal election results" as the BJP registered a record win in the state assembly polls, and said the party will continue to work for the people of Himachal Pradesh, where it lost to the Congress.
While the Congress suffered its worst-ever defeat in Gujarat, it managed a comfortable win in Himachal Pradesh with 40 seats in the 68-member state assembly as the party thanked the people of the state and attributed the victory to its general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's hard work and poll planning.
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which had contested Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat with an eye on becoming the key challenger to the BJP, thanked the voters of Gujarat for putting the party on course to become a national party. The party only managed five seats in the 182-member Gujarat assembly and drew a blank in Himachal.
With the BJP registering a record tally in Gujarat, Modi said he was overcome with a lot of emotions on the "phenomenal election results".
Modi also lauded party workers in the state, saying each of them is a champion."This historic win would never be possible without the exceptionally hard work of our Karyakartas, who are the real strength of our Party," he said.
"People blessed the politics of development and at the same time expressed a desire that they want this momentum to continue at a greater pace. I bow to Gujarat's Jan Shakti," he said in a tweet.
On Himachal Pradesh, the Prime Minister said the BJP would keep working to fulfill the aspirations of the state and raise people's issues in coming times.
According to the Election Commission of India data, in Gujarat, the BJP received 53 per cent of the votes counted, the Congress 27 per cent and the AAP 13 per cent. The BJP had registered victory in 147 seats and was leading in nine seats in the 182-member state Assembly.
Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge congratulated the people of Himachal Pradesh and party workers for the elusive electoral success.
"I thank the people and voters of Himachal Pradesh for the victory. I also thank all the leaders and in-charge secretaries who worked hard for the success of the party," Kharge told reporters.
He said Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who campaigned in Himachal Pradesh, and Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Yatra also contributed to the party's victory.
On the party's dismal performance in Gujarat, Kharge said victory and defeat were part of democracy. "We accept defeat and will continue our fight and remove our shortcomings without compromising on our ideology,"he said.
Thanking the people of Himachal Pradesh, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi tweeted "heartfelt thanks to the people of Himachal Pradesh for this decisive victory. Hearty congratulations to all Congress workers and leaders. Your hard work and dedication are truly behind this victory." "I assure you again, every promise made to the public will be fulfilled at the earliest," Gandhi added.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra also thanked the people of Himachal Pradesh.
Congress leader and Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said his party would protect its MLAs from the fear of poaching by the BJP. Baghel was the party's senior observer for Himachal Pradesh.
For BJP's landslide victory in the Gujarat assembly elections, several Union ministers and senior BJP leaders thanked Modi.
Hailing his party's terrific showing in his home state, Home Minister Amit Shah said,"Gujarat has rejected those who do politics of hollow promises, revadi (freebies) and appeasement and has given an unprecedented mandate to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's BJP, which worked for public welfare and development." Asserting that the biggest credit for this victory goes to the trust reposed by the people in the leadership of Modi, his popularity and credibility, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said "congratulations to him (Modi) and thanks to the public." As BJP celebrated its victory in Gujarat, NCP veteran Sharad Pawar said the results did not reflect the national mood, while Uddhav Thackeray faction of Shiv Sena hinted towards a possible tacit understanding between BJP and the AAP, which had campaigned hard in Modi's home state.
"The Gujarat results don't reflect the mood of the country. The results of the civic polls in Delhi and Himachal Pradesh Assembly, where the BJP has been defeated prove that,'' Pawar said.
"People have a suspicion that it must have happened that you (the AAP) take Delhi and leave Gujarat to us (the BJP)," Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut told reporters in New Delhi, alluding to the possibility of tacit understanding between the two parties.
AAP Convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia thanked the people of Gujarat for putting their party on course to become a national party.
"Due to the votes given by the people of Gujarat, the AAP is today becoming a national party. The politics of education and health is making a mark for the first time in the country. Congratulations to the entire country on this," Sisodia said in a tweet in Hindi.
In a series of tweets, Rajnath Singh said the BJP's "historic victory" in the Gujarat elections is a victory of the party's commitment to development, good governance and public welfare.
Singh also congratulated BJP president JP Nadda, Home Minister Shah, Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel and the party's state unit head C R Paatil for the BJP's performance in the state.
He said with the tireless hard work of all these leaders, "the BJP has created a history, by breaking all records".
Paatil said Bhupendra Patel would continue as the Chief Minister of the state and his oath-taking ceremony would take place on December 12. Prime Minister Modi and Home Minister Shah would attend the swearing-in ceremony.
Lashing out at the AAP for trying to "demean" the people of Gujarat with "dole politics", Paatil said, "the AAP never thought about Gujarati 'asmita' and was never able to connect with the psyche of the people of Gujarat." "All anti-Gujarati forces have been defeated...The people of Gujarat had already made up their minds to re-elect the BJP government in the state. It's a victory of good governance and development of the BJP government at the Centre and in Gujarat. The Congress must introspect as to why they are losing public support," the BJP leader said.
Shah, who represents Gandhinagar in Lok Sabha, said he salutes the people of Gujarat on this historic victory and congratulated Nadda, Patel and Paatil.
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