Despite hitting rock bottom in the recent panchayat elections, UP Congress chief Ajay Kumar Lallu, on Sunday, expressed confidence that his party has the capacity to fight the elections, without aligning with either the SP or the BSP. He said that the Congress will form the next government on its own.
“The Congress would fight the assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh next year under Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s supervision and that under her leadership, the party will make a comeback in the state after over three decades,” he said in an interaction with media persons.
Claiming “winds of change” were blowing in the state, he said: “Badlav ki aandhi hai, jiska naam Priyanka Gandhi hai (There is a storm of change and its name is Priyanka Gandhi)”.
Lallu said the Congress, with just five legislators has proved to be a more effective opposition than the Samajwadi Party which has 49 MLAs in the 403-member Assembly.
Asked if Priyanka Gandhi would be made the chief ministerial face by the party for the UP polls, he said it is the party’s national leadership that would decide on who should be the chief ministerial face.
Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi is likely to visit several districts this month with an aim to enthuse the cadre and prepare the party for a pitched electoral battle with the ruling BJP.
The Congress will forge an alliance with the people and the party is confident they will bless it, he added.
On whether votes could get divided if the SP, the BSP and the Congress contest separately, Lallu said the people had given opportunity to all the other political players in the state but they were not able to stay true to the faith shown by the people, and now it was the Congress’ turn.
He said that Congress workers had taken the fight against the state government to the streets and over 1 lakh party workers are facing cases filed against them.
“I myself have been detained more than 80 times in a year, over 40-50 cases were filed and I went to jail four times,” Lallu said.
He further stated that the Congress got 50 lakh votes in Lok Sabha polls and in the assembly elections, it got 51 lakh votes, but in zila panchayat polls, it got 1,52,00,000 votes.