NEW DELHI: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Saturday said that the defeat in the recent Gorakhpur and Phulpur bypolls are not a reflection of the mood of the people for the Bharatiya Janata Party ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. "Bypolls are held on local issues when we campaign for 2019 elections, national issues will be spoken about then," he said.
He also dismissed the alliance of the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party as a hogwash and asserted that this plan of a united front defeating BJP is not important. "People will not support this. The plan of a united front was also spoken of in 2014. They did not speak of stopping corruption but only vowed to stop the Modi wave," he said.
Claiming that the BJP is ready to learn a lesson from the bypoll loss, Adityanath said the party will bounce back by winning all 80 seats in 2019 Lok Sabha elections. "There has been a disappointment due to this loss but I am confident that we will win 80 instead of these 2 seats in the upcoming polls because of the schemes that we have taken up. Phulpur and Gorakhpur results are a lesson for us," he said.
He accepted that it was the overconfidence in the party cadre that led to the loss. "Whenever I spoke to anyone in the party during the campaigning, everyone was confident of winning the polls. It was overconfidence that led to the loss. Also, people did not come out to vote for the bypolls," he said.
He also admitted that 'brand Yogi Adityanath' has taken a hit by this loss as he was a five-time MP from Gorakhpur and Phulpur also was previously held by Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya. "Everyone knows these are bypolls which are fought on a small scale. BJP is a democratic party. We have begun analysing the loss and will take whatever steps are needed," he said.
Yogi Adityanath was speaking at Zee India Conclave. Before him, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Rajya Sabha MP Amar Singh, former UP CM Akhilesh Yadav, BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen chief Asaduddin Owaisi also spoke at the summit.