New Delhi: The Congress party, which is set to announce its second list of candidates, has opened a back channel for talks with the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party in Uttar Pradesh for a tie-up in the Lok Sabha election. Recently, the SP-BSP alliance included the Rashtriya Lok Dal in their team.
According to an opposition leader, the Congress is working hard towards forming an alliance to prevent the division of anti-Bharatiya Janata Party votes in Uttar Pradesh. The party hopes that the changed political situation post the Balakot air strike will bring some flexibility in the party’s position in the state. Earlier, the SP-BSP alliance has refused to allot more than two seats to the grand old party.
A top Congress leader, while commenting on the party’s serious efforts of preventing the BJP coming into the power, said, “The SP and the Congress performed equally bad in the 2014 Lok Sabha and the 2017 assembly elections. But Mayawati drew a big zero in the last Lok Sabha election and still she is creating roadblock in the formation of a formidable grand alliance. If we all have the common intentions to take on the BJP, then the SP and the BSP are committing a harakiri by excluding the Congress from the alliance.”
Though, the Congress is resolved to contesting on all 80 seats, both SP and BSP are determined to give Congress two seats. Former chief minister of UP and SP chief Akhiesh Yadav said, when asked about giving Congress 9 to 10 seats, “The Congress is party of the alliance, we have given them two seats.”
Recently, the Congress has announced its list of 11 candidates. According to party sources, the second list of candidates that the party is likely to announce, might include UP state Congress chief Raj Babbar from Muradabad and former Union minister Sriprakash Jaiswal from Kanpur.