With exit polls projecting a majority for the BJP-led NDA, BJP today took potshots at the ruling party, saying it will now find a scapegoat in Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in its attempt to save Sonia and Rahul Gandhi from criticism.
An upbeat BJP claimed it will do better than what the exit polls have predicted, stressing that the NDA will cross the 300-seat mark. "The mantra in Congress is to blame others in case of something bad while giving all credit to Congress President and Vice-President. Therefore, PM will be blamed and others too. There will be talk about collective responsibility," party spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said taking a dig at Congress.
Singh, he said, was only occupying the chair but did not have power which was wielded by the Gandhis. He said NDA will surpass their average tally of 270-275 given to it as it will sweep Seemandhra in alliance with TDP and do better in other places. The results of local elections in Andhra Pradesh, he said, were an indication of things to come. TDP has left its nearest rival YSR Congress far behind in the Seemandhra region while it along with BJP has made its presence felt in Telangana.
Javadekar said Congress has seen a fall of 10 per cent votes in states and BJP has got even those votes in Lok Sabha elections which generally go to regional parties. Asked if BJP was exploring alliances with YSR Congress and BJD, he said these questions should be asked on May 17 not today. He declined to comment on the likely appointment of the new Army Chief by the outgoing government.
The Defence Ministry had yesterday decided to go ahead with the process of appointing the next Army Chief as it recommended the name of Vice Chief of Army Staff Lt Gen Dalbir Singh Suhag for the top post.