Congress to contest all 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP

The Congress party will contest all 80 Lok Sabha seats at stake in Uttar Pradesh in the coming General Elections, the party veteran and Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said here on Sunday.

Talking to media persons, Azad, also the party's in-charge for UP affairs, said: "We will fight on all 80 seats of Uttar Pradesh in the coming Lok Sabha elections. We are fully prepared. And just like the Congress emerged number one party in Uttar Pradesh in 2009 Lok Sabha elections, we will fight on our own and win twice those number of seats in the upcoming elections."

"We did not break this alliance. The public should know that. We had earlier also said that we are ready to walk with every party that wants to defeat the BJP. But we cannot force anyone. They have (SP-BSP) closed this chapter. So we will continue this fight for defeating the BJP on our own," he said further. UPCC chief Raj Babbar was also present on the occasion.

Azad's announcement comes close on the heels of Congress president Rahul Gandhi's statement during a media conference in Dubai on Saturday that his party would contest the coming Lok Sabha elections with "full force" in Uttar Pradesh.

Rahul's comment had come hours after the SP and the BSP announced a tie-up to take on the BJP in Uttar Pradesh in 2019 General Elections.

"The Congress party has tremendous to offer to the people of Uttar Pradesh. I have tremendous respect to the leaders of BSP and SP. They have a right to do what they want to do. The BSP and SP have made a political decision. It's on us on how to strengthen the Congress party in Uttar Pradesh and we will fight with our full capacity," Rahul had told media in Dubai on Saturday.

As per the alliance, the SP and the BSP will contest on 38 seats each, while they will not field their candidate against Congress president Rahul Gandhi in Amethi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi in Rae Bareli. They have also kept two seats for the smaller parties.

During the press conference to announce the alliance in Lucknow on Saturday, Mayawati said that neither the SP nor the BSP would benefit by allying with the Congress. She also said that there was not much difference between the Congress and the BJP.

"Many a time, we have seen similarities between the Congress and the BJP. For example, in the defence sector, we are seeing how both indulged in corruption (Bofors and Rafale). Congress imposed declared emergency. Today there is an undeclared emergency," she said.

"Most sections of the society including scheduled castes, farmers, and the poor were unhappy with the Congress' rule. Whether the mandate goes to the Congress or the BJP, it is one and the same thing," she said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel