Lucknow, Jan 12: The BJP on Monday suffered a big jolt in the Cantonment Board polls in Uttar Pradesh when all the candidates supported by it in Varanasi--Prime Minister Narendra Modi's parliamentary constituency--and Lucknow lost while winning just one in Agra and coming second in Bareilly and Mathura.
It had either fielded its own candidates or extended support to Independents in the Cantonment Board elections held yesterday after a gap of five years.
In Varanasi, all the seven seats were bagged by Independents while in Lucknow, the home turf of Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, BJP lost all the eight wards to Independents.
In Agra too, the performance of BJP was dismal as it won just one ward with Independents romping home in seven seats. BJP had contested all the eight seats on party symbol.
BJP bagged two of the seven wards in Mathura with the remaining five going to Independents while in Bareilly the Independents and BJP got four and three seats respectively.
Asked for his reaction to the party's poor performance in the elections, BJP state chief Laxmikant Bajpai said most of the candidates lost as they were not given official party symbol.
Commenting on BJP's rout, UP Minister and Samajwadi Party leader Ambika Chowdhury said the results had proved BJP's tall claims hollow.
"BJP had made tall claims but could not come up to the expectations of the people. In UP Assembly by-elections soon after Narendra Modi swept to power at the Centre, BJP lost nine out of 11 seats. Now it will taste more defeat in the days to come in all elections at least in Uttar Pradesh," he said, adding, "People have understood the reality."
Cantonment Board is a civic administration body under the control of Ministry of Defence. The Board comprises elected members besides ex-officio and nominated members as per the Cantonments Act, 2006.
It takes care of mandatory duties like provision of public health, water supply, sanitation, primary education and street lighting etc.