Battle for UP: Cong focuses on Shelia’s experience

Lucknow : Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi with UP Congress chief Raj Babbar, senior leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Sanjay Singh and party's CM candidate Sheila Dikshit during a party programme in Lucknow on Friday. PTI Photo

Lucknow : Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi with UP Congress chief Raj Babbar, senior leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Sanjay Singh and party’s CM candidate Sheila Dikshit during a party programme in Lucknow on Friday. PTI Photo

In the upcoming assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, the Congress is going to fight alone. This was clarified by party Vice-President Rahul Gandhi in Lucknow on Friday.

Rahul sounded the poll bugle for the party in the state when he interacted with party workers.

“We are contesting the election to get complete majority in the Assembly and have our own chief minister…You know what has happened in the last 27 years when different parties have only divided the state,” said Gandhi in Lucknow.

“We will have an alliance (only) with the Congress workers and every citizen of the state,” added Gandhi, completely ruling out pre-poll tie-ups in the polls which are scheduled to take place early in 2017.

“It is a fight of ideologies…We have to help Uttar Pradesh get its rightful place…While Congress brings all together, other parties divide them,” Gandhi said, adding that the party will work out a strategy for the UP election to “wipe away the anger in the mind of people against each other”.

He also assured party workers that the party plans to allot more tickets to women and the youth.

Lucknow : Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi with UP Congress chief Raj Babbar and senior leader Ghulam Nabi Azad during a party programme in Lucknow on Friday. PTI Photo

Lucknow : Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi with UP Congress chief Raj Babbar and senior leader Ghulam Nabi Azad during a party programme in Lucknow on Friday. PTI Photo

Gandhi also spoke about Congress’ chief ministerial candidate, the “experienced” Sheila Dikshit.

He completely backed the 78-year-old former Delhi Chief Minister, who single-handedly changed the face of the national capital.

“…Thinking is more important than age…Though youth is essential for energy, experience is also necessary,” explained Gandhi.

In a first of its kind interaction, Rahul met and spoke to Congress’ district, block and booth level workers to chart out a roadmap leading up to the polls.

He encouraged the workers to be on the field in different constituencies and address the needs and concerns of the people through ‘Janata Darshan’.

The party will encourage workers who will be seen among the people, said Gandhi.

(With inputs from PTI)