Congress continues dismal show in UP

Candidates lose deposit in 9 of 11 seats

Congress’ attempts to revive itself in Uttar Pradesh suffered a serious setback in the recent by-polls in the state. The party not only failed to win any seat, its nominees lost their security deposits on nine of 11 Assembly seats they contested.

Barring Charkhari seat – where the party finished second behind the Samajwadi Party (SP) and pushed the BJP to third spot – and Hamirpur seat, the Congress candidates lost their security deposits on all other Assembly seats. The Congress had not put up nominee at Mainpuri Lok Sabha seat.

In fact, barring Charkhari and Hamirpur, the party’s votes had experienced a sharp decline on all other seats much to the concern of the state party leaders.

“We were expecting to win at least a couple of seats in the by-polls,” said UP Congress chief Nirmal Khatri.

Congress nominees’ votes crossed five digits only at Hamirpur, Charkhari, Noida, Thakurdwara and Saharanpur. On all other seats, its nominees’ votes were in the range of 2,500 to 6,800.

Congress leader Satyadeo Tripathi said the party would have to ponder over its performance in the by-polls and revisit its strategy to be able to do well in the 2017 Assembly polls in the state.

UP Congress sources said the outcome of the by-polls could trigger a major shake-up in the state organisation of the party.

“A change of guard in the state leadership is imminent now,” said a senior leader.
The Congress, which could win only two seats in the state in the recent Lok Sabha polls, had decided to go it alone in the by-polls as it aimed at making its presence felt on all the seats. Congress had an electoral alliance with the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) in the recent Lok Sabha elections.

The Congress high command had, after the dismal showing in the Lok Sabha polls, dissolved all its state-level committees but allowed the state unit president Nirmal Khatri to continue. The party could win only Raebareli and Amethi seats in the Lok Sabha polls.
DH News Service

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