New Delhi, Dec 18 :
It is time to prepare for the 2014 national elections and there is no need for the Congress to “lose heart” over the party’s loss in the recent four state assembly polls, party chief Sonia Gandhi said Wednesday.
“While the elections results are disappointing, we should not lose heart. There is another battle ahead of us in May 2014, for which we must ready ourselves,” Gandhi said at a meeting of party MPs here in Parliament House.
“We have our task cut out over the next few months,” she said.
The Congress performed badly in Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh assembly elections spread over November and December.
“We accept the verdict of the people. We are going into the causes for the defeat,” said Gandhi.
The Congress, she noted, “failed to convince the voters of its policies and programmes” and was not able “to fulfill their aspirations”.
The only consolation was Mizoram where the Congress retained power.
Gandhi noted that “despite allround development in Rajasthan and Delhi, the Congress lost”.
In Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, “despite a spirited campaign, we failed to dislodge the incumbent governments”, she said.
Lack of unity cost the party in Chhattisgarh, she noted.
“In Chhattisgarh, we fairly came close to doing so and had we shown greater unity of purpose, we might have succeeded,” she said.
The party’s campaign lacked discipline in Delhi and Rajasthan, she said.
The Congress chief exhorted the party MPs to work for the people and show allegiance to principles of democracy and secularism.
“Our opponents advocate policies of divisiveness and sectarian interests,” she said.
Gandhi noted that the party was able to get passed the food security bill and the land acquisition bill as well as the anti-manual scavenging bill.
“The opposition wasted time in making vituperative and baseless personal attacks on all of us, including the prime minister,” she said.
Noting that the cabinet approved the anti-communal violence bill, Gandhi said she was unhappy that the women’s reservation bill could not be passed in the Lok Sabha for want of consensus. (IANS)