NEW DELHI: “We are very hopeful that our results will be completely opposite of what exit polls are showing,” Congress Parliamentary Party chairperson Sonia Gandhi said on Monday when asked about her expectations. Gandhi made the remarks after attending an event here to pay tribute to DMK stalwart M Karunanidhi on his 100th birth anniversary.
On the eve of counting, Congress continued to talk up the possibility of the results being rigged even as it denied that it had finalised a detailed protest plan in the event of the results being on the lines of the exit polls.
At the same time, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge appealed to bureaucrats to discharge their duties “without coercion or political pressure”, reinforcing concerns the opposition has expressed in the wake of the exit polls.
“Do not get intimidated by anyone. Do not bow down to any unconstitutional means. Do not be afraid of anyone and discharge your duties, based on merit, on this counting day. We owe it to future generations, a vibrant democracy and a long-lasting Constitution, as penned by the makers of modern India,” Kharge said in a public appeal.
Congress also asked all its workers to be vigilant during counting of votes, be present in their district and state headquarters and report any kind of mischief to the party’s monitoring cell. The party has informed all party workers that a monitoring centre will be open 24×7 at AICC headquarters in Delhi where any kind of wrongdoing noticed during the counting process must be reported.
The party called for caution, claiming that in the past few days they had seen BJP and its govt “violate the democratic and constitutional process” during elections.
A news agency handle had posted a story claiming that INDIA bloc leaders had been asked to reach the national capital by Tuesday night or early Wednesday, and they would thrash out a plan for public protests if results were not up to their estimates.
Replying to the post, Congress spokesperson Jairam Ramesh said, “INDIA leaders will obviously meet after the results are declared. Any other meaning being given to it is completely misleading and false.” Another senior office-bearer said there was no such plan in the party.

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