Breaking his silence on the party’s worst-ever performance in Uttar Pradesh, where it bagged only seven of the 403 Assembly seats after a tie-up with Samajwadi Party, the Congress Vice President alleged that BJP had won largely due to polarisation and money power.

The Congress leader congratulated the saffron party for its victory in the state but accused it of polarising voters. “I would like to say that the BJP won the election in UP and I would like to congratulate them. Why they won it, there are multiple reasons. Large part of it is polarisation. But the fact is that they won the election,” he said.

On questions being raised on his leadership after the party’s poor performance in UP and Uttarakhand, he called for initiating changes within and hailed the role of regional leaders who fought assembly polls and emerged victorious. 

“As far as the Congress party is concerned, we do need to make structural and organisational changes and that is a fact,” he said, while replying to queries on the results of the elections to five states that were declared on March 11.

There are “ups and down” for every party, Gandhi said, adding, “We had a little down in UP which is fine, we accept it. But we have a ideological fight with the BJP and we will continue to do that.”

He said the Congress formed its government in Punjab and won the election in Manipur and Goa. “That is not a bad result. It is true that we lost the election in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand,” he said. 

Gandhi today credited the regional leaders in Punjab, Goa and Manipur for the performance. The Congress leader said both in Uttarakhand and Punjab, as well as in other states, it is the regional leaders who fought elections. “They are the people who fight these elections and they are successful in Punjab, successful in Goa and in Manipur,” he said.

His comments came after the Supreme Court ordered a floor test in Goa on Thursday but didn’t stop BJP’s Manohar Parrikar from taking oath as chief minister this evening.