With the Aam Aadmi Party yet to decide on whether or not it will contest assembly elections in Gujarat, a team from the state will come to Delhi on Tuesday to provide “feedback”, following which a call will be taken, sources said.
The focus, for now, will continue to be on “reconnecting with the people in Delhi”. Most leaders maintained it was unlikely that the party would contest polls in Gujarat.
This, in spite of their strategy to target states where there is a direct competition between two parties. One of the reasons, party sources said, was that taking on Prime Minister Narendra Modi has “backfired” in the past. Gujarat has been part of AAP’s plan to expand its national footprint.
The party launched an elaborate exercise in Modi’s home state five months ago to spread its reach and become the main challenger to the ruling BJP by contesting all 182 seats. But electoral losses in Goa, Punjab, and the Municipal Corporations of Delhi may have changed that.
An AAP source said, “The problem is one of perception. A lot of people feel AAP doesn’t work but complaints and shouts. It is an unfortunate scenario. But the reality is that we are not taking on the BJP and Modi because we want to. The Centre’s interference in our work is a reality.”
On the recent losses, a leader said, “We expected to do well and win Punjab. We had not even made a Plan B. Call it inexperience or a miscalculation, it was definitely bad strategy. We won assembly elections in Delhi twice… After that we went and formed the the main opposition in a state like Punjab. We should have celebrated this.”
“In Goa, there was no organisation and yet we were able to speak about issues. The problem was that our strategy didn’t take into account the fact that we needed local people to go door-to-door,” the leader said.