Bharatiya Janata Party leaders in the state, where assembly elections are due in 2017, have been stunned by the sweeping win of the Grand Alliance in neighbouring Bihar.

Having lost to the AAP in Delhi in February, BJP leaders had expected an easy win in Bihar. Yesterday's results have come as a shocker. In an obvious reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah, a former BJP Cabinet minister in the state told reporters on the condition of anonymity that the party leadership needed to be more humble.

"They should also realise that people's expectations were ignited by us last year during the Lok Sabha election. The time has come to pay back the people by delivering," he added.

Other party leader said, also on condition of anonymity, that PM Modi's charisma was waning and the leadership appeared disconnected vis-a-vis the people. This, one leader said, was fast becoming a 'worrying reality'.

The BJP knows that the Bihar loss holds a warning in Uttar Pradesh, where it won a staggering 71 of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in 2014 and has set its eyes on dislodging the Samajwadi Party from power.

"This is a fit rebuttal to the BJP leadership which has been high on gas and low on groundwork in UP," said another party veteran, who has been sidelined in the present dispensation.

BJP state spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak, who never misses a chance to  tom-tom the party and its leadership, was restrained on Monday. "It (Bihar) is a big setback. We will have to admit that somewhere a lot of things went wrong," Pathak told reporters.

Latest News from Uttar Pradesh News Desk