"The Congress will have to do a lot of introspection in Gujarat.... Narendra Modi has a lot of support of the cadre and the party. This is an emphatic win and he has won for the third time in a row," BJP leader Arun Jaitley [ Images ] told reporters in New Delhi [ Images ].
Jaitley had been closely involved in the BJP election campaign both in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.
"There was no anti-incumbency in Gujarat. The Congress tried to damage BJP and despite the presence of another party (Keshubhai Patel's GPP), our results have been good," Jaitley said.
Asked if this victory paves the way for Modi to become BJP's prime ministerial candidate in the 2014 elections, Jaitley said Thursday's result is for 2012 elections.
"This may be an interesting topic from the media's point of view but we will take a decision at the appropriate time," Jaitley said.
On the poll loss in Himachal Pradesh, Jaitley said Prem Kumar Dhumal had performed well as the chief minister and the loss margin was narrow.
"But there were too many rebels this time in Himachal Pradesh. Had we been able to put our house in order, we would have won.... Had the party been united as it was in Gujarat, results would have been different in Himachal Pradesh," Jaitley said.