We don't want SP-BSP 'ghatbandhan' to lose: Moily

Moily said the Congress has chosen to fight the polls in Uttar Pradesh, an electorally crucial state with 80 seats, on its own strength after the SP-BSP offered it only two seats. (PTI File Photo)

Senior Congress leader M Veerappa Moily said on Thursday his party did not want the SP-BSP-RLD alliance to lose in Uttar Pradesh and that it may enter into an understanding with the 'ghatbandhan' in segments where it is not strong in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

He said the Congress has chosen to fight the polls in Uttar Pradesh, an electorally crucial state with 80 seats, on its own strength after the SP-BSP offered it only two seats.

"For a national party like the Congress, we cannot take like that (the offer of only two seats). That is why we are putting up candidates," Moily told PTI in a telephonic interview.

"And while putting up candidates, there may be seat understanding even without 'ghatbandhan'. You will see that trend. Wherever we (Congress) are interested...they (SP-BSP) are interested to defeat the BJP, there may be an understanding.

"We do not want our (SP-BSP-RLD) 'ghatbandhan' people to lose. That kind of understanding will take place between the Congress, BSP and SP," the former chief minister of Karnataka said.

Asked if the Congress would support the SP-BSP-RLD alliance where his party was not strong in Uttar Pradesh, he said, "Yes, this understanding will take place during the elections."

SP chief Akhilesh Yadav recently remarked that the Congress was very much in the SP-BSP-RLD alliance and two seats were being left for it.

BSP supremo Mayawati had on March 12 announced that her party would not have an election tie-up with the Congress in any state.

Meanwhile, Moily also claimed that there was "rethinking" in the party on not having an alliance with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Delhi.

"We are rethinking, why not to align (with AAP) keeping in mind the broader picture of opposition unity," he said.

The Congress leader dismissed suggestions that the opposition unity was not happening at "desired levels" to take on the BJP-led NDA, saying pre-poll alliance was not possible in states such as Kerala.

"We (Congress) are fighting against the Left parties in Kerala...pre-election unity is not possible at all (there). We are likely to be with them...Leftists in West Bengal, there the pre-election scenario is different.

"All opposition parties are united against one common enemy -- that is the BJP," Moily said.

Asked how many seats the Congress will win in the Lok Sabha elections, he said it would be "definitely 150-plus".

He termed as "excellent" Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's first public speech in Ahmedabad on March 12 after assuming charge as Congress general secretary.

"She has been taking a lot of interest in selection of candidates and also in canvassing; it (her entry into active politics) will definitely make Congress more strong," the former Union minister added.

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