Cong bigwigs in UP to contest LS polls

Congress President Rahul Gandhi, party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and party's UP unit chief Raj Babbar meet the family members of the slain CRPF jawan Pradeep Kumar, who lost his life in the Pulwama terror attack, at his residence in Shamli on February 20. PTI

Nurturing dreams to make a comeback after star campaigner Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's arrival on the electoral scene, the Congress is likely to ask its senior leaders in Uttar Pradesh to contest the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls.

According to the sources in the UP Congress, around a dozen bigwigs of the party could be nominated by the grand old party to take on the BJP in the LS elections.

Sources said the state unit had already finalised the names of several senior leaders and sent them to the party high command for approval.

Sources said those likely to contest included former Union ministers Sriprakash Jaiswal, Salman Khursheed, Jitin Prasada and R P N Singh.

Senior leader P L Punia, former state unit president Nirmal Khatri and UP Congress vice president Imran Masood are also in the list of the candidates, sources said.

"Presence of senior leaders in the fray will galvanise the party workers and boost their morale," said a UP Cong leader while speaking to DH here.

He said the party was likely to come out with its first list of the candidates in the first week of next month so that they can get sufficient time for the preparation for the polls.

Sources said that the Congress would be focusing on around two dozen seats, where it felt it had a chance.

These seats include the ones where the party had emerged victorious in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls and also fared well in the 2014 general elections.

The Congress had won 21 seats in 2009 LS polls but could manage to win only 2 in 2014.

The Congress leader exuded confidence that the party would do well in the forthcoming polls.

"The old guards are returning to our fold and the workers have become active again after Priyankaji's impressive roadshow in the state capital," he said.

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Cong bigwigs in UP to contest LS polls

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