Nation Politics 17 Jan 2017 UP polls: Cong annou ...

UP polls: Cong announces alliance with SP; Akhilesh says ‘deal in 2 days’

AGENCIES
Published Jan 17, 2017, 1:53 pm IST
Updated Jan 17, 2017, 2:23 pm IST
Cong CM candidate Sheila Dikshit said there cannot be two CM faces in case of an alliance in the politically crucial state.
Supporters celebrate in Agra after UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav got the Samajwadi Party symbol, the cycle, and the party name. (Photo: PTI)
 Supporters celebrate in Agra after UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav got the Samajwadi Party symbol, the cycle, and the party name. (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: Ending all speculations, Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Tuesday said that his party would enter into an alliance with the Samajwadi Party for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls under the leadership of Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.

Azad further said the details about the same will be decided in the coming days.

 

Azad's statement came as his party colleague Sheila Dikshit stated that she would withdraw as the chief ministerial candidate if her party enters into an alliance with the Samajwadi Party for the high-stakes polls.

Dikshit said there cannot be two chief ministerial faces in case of an alliance in the politically crucial state. "Talks are on and the SP-Congress alliance will benefit Uttar Pradesh. I will do what the party high command decides," she added.

Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said a decision on tying up with the Congress will be taken in a "day or two". "Decision on alliance (with Congress) will be taken in a day or two," he said, buoyed by the Election Commission's order recognising him as the President of Samajwadi Party and allowing him to retain the 'bicycle' symbol.

 

Earlier on Monday, SP general secretary Ramgopal Yadav, a close aide of Akhilesh, expressed hope of a grand secular alliance to fight elections in the state.

Ramgopal said the final decision regarding forging an alliance with Congress will be taken by Akhilesh, but he expressed hopes that it will happen.

"It is Akhilesh Yadav who will decide on the alliance. But I am hopeful it will happen," said Ramgopal, who has been a staunch supporter of Akhilesh during the intra-party tussle.

In a major setback to Mulayam Singh Yadav, the Election Commission yesterday recognised the faction led by Akhilesh as the Samajwadi Party and allotted it the 'cycle' symbol.

 

Uttar Pradesh has 403 Assembly constituencies where Akhilesh's party would be contesting the majority of seats and was likely to have RLD as a junior partner in Western Uttar Pradesh, which was once a stronghold of Ajit Singh.

The three parties will have to race against time to finalise the seat arrangements in the next few days as the western Uttar Pradesh, where Ajit Singh enjoys some influence, goes to polls in the first two phases on February 11 and 15.

Samajwadi Party sources said the list of its party candidates will be released in a day or two. There were reports that the three parties would come out with a common minimum programme.

 

Leaders from the three parties insist that the main task in Uttar Pradesh is to stop the Narendra Modi-led BJP from coming to power.

Meanwhile, the poll process for assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh will begin today with notification for the first phase of voting scheduled on February 11. 73 constituencies in western Uttar Pradesh will vote in this phase.

The filing of nominations for these constituencies will start today and the last date for the same will be January 24.

The withdrawal of candidature could be done till January 27 and polling will be on February 11.

 

The districts going to polls in the first phase are Shamli, Muzaffarnagar, Baghpat, Meerut, Ghaziabad, Gautam Buddha Nagar, Hapur, Bulandshahr, Aligarh, Mathura, Hathras, Agra, Firozabad, Etah and Kasganj.

Uttar Pradesh will have seven-phase polling between February 11 and March 8.

The term of the present government will end on May 27.

In the 2015 Assembly elections in Bihar, Congress had joined hands with JD(U) and RJD to form a grand alliance, which caused a major upset for BJP-led NDA which had won 31 of the 40 seats in 2014 Lok Sabha polls in Bihar.

 

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Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi




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