India's Congress Party leaders set to discuss election defeat

Senior leaders of India’s Congress Party will meet in the capital New Delhi on Monday to evaluate their defeat in this year’s parliamentary elections.

The Congress which ruled the country for two consecutive terms slumped to its worst-ever defeat last week, claiming only 44 seats in the 543-member parliament.

The rival, Hindu nationalist BJP has won first majority in 30 years, inflicting a crushing defeat on incumbent Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Congress Party in the landmark parliamentary polls.

Some Congress activists have blamed party leaders, Sonia and Rahul Gandhi, for their failed campaign strategies.

There is widespread speculation that the Nehru-Gandhi political dynasty may offer to step down after the poll debacle.

"Where does the question of either the Congress president or vice president resigning even arise?" media outlets quoted outgoing Congress minister, Manish Tewari, as saying.

Meanwhile, India’s incoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi has attended a victory parade in New Delhi to celebrate his party’s election win.

Modi also held meetings on Monday with senior party members over the formation of the next government.

The BJP managed to secure more than the 272-seat majority required to create a government. Modi is expected to be sworn in as prime minister this week.