Pune: As the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged as the single largest party in Karnataka - nine seats away from a clear majority, the city unit of the party celebrated party’s victory in their party office on JM Road.
On the other hand, even after the JD(S)-Congress parties announced joining hands to form the government in the neighbouring state by Tuesday afternoon, there was no enthusiasm in Congress Bhavan which is few metres away from BJP office. Local Congress leaders were busy blaming the ruling party in the Centre for using threatening tactics.
As the results were out, party workers started gathering in party offices of BJP and Congress respectively. Congress party workers were disappointed to see that the party was trailing. Meanwhile, speaking on the decision of Congress to support JD(S) to form government in Karnataka City Unit Chief Ramesh Bagwe said, “Congress is ready for the sacrifice to keep the religious forces at bay.”
In evening, when it was clear that though BJP had won maximum seats, it was unlikely to form the government, then also, BJP workers did not stop celebrating. Despite that, BJP leaders were celebrating victory as they got more seats than Congress. BJP City Unit Chief Yogesh Gogawale and Member of Parliament (MP) Anil Shirole distributed sweets and the party displayed a banner of Union minister Prakash Javadekar who is in charge of Karnataka.
While speaking to Sakal Times, Gogawale said, “I don’t know what will happen next, but we are happy with the fact that BJP got maximum seats in Karnataka.” He added, “Congress party’s attempts to divide voters on the basis of caste and religion were unsuccessful. People chose BJP for development done in the county.”
On the other hand, Bagwe said, “The BJP used money, muscle and power in Karnataka election. BJP issued open threats to Congress leaders and local leaders and it created fear in the minds of people.”
Neelam Gorhe, spokesperson of the Shiv Sena, said that the BJP benefited from anti-incumbency. “The BJP benefited from the possible backlash of the Veershaiv Lingayats who are not in favour of the decision of granting minority status to the community,” Gorhe said, adding, “But the importance that JD(S) has received, highlights the fact that regional parties are still a force to reckon with.”