New Delhi: Amid negotiation talks with various parties not making headway, slowing the Congress’ campaign and even compelling it to go it alone in some places, the party has released its fifth list of candidates for the coming Lok Sabha elections. (Also read: In UP, Cong Forges Alliance With JAP, Mahan Dal)
The list, with 56 names on it, has 22 candidates for Andhra Pradesh, five for Assam, six for Odisha, eight for Telangana, three for Uttar Pradesh, 11 for West Bengal and one for Lakshadweep.
Among the party heavyweights from Bengal are Adhir Choudhury, Abu Hashem Khan Choudhury and Abhijeet Mukherjee, son of the former President Pranab Mukherjee.
In Andhra Pradesh, the 22 candidates announced include former Union Minister Pallam Raju from the Kakinada seat.
The five names from Assam include that of Rajya Sabha member Bhubaneshwar Kalita.
From Uttar Pradesh are three names; that of Harendra Agarwal in place of O P Sharma from Meerut, Dolly Sharma from Ghaziabad and Bansi Lal Pahadiya from Bulandshahr.
Former MP Hamdullah Saeed has been picked for Lakshadweep.
Only recently did the Congress decide to go it alone in West Bengal after its parleys with the Left failed to bear fruit. Meanwhile, in Delhi the party has been divided over an alliance with Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party and reports said senior leaders had written to party chief Rahul Gandhi over the contentious issue.
Reacting, party leader P C Chacko said, “As far as I know there are senior leaders in Delhi who think that defeating the BJP is party’s immediate responsibility and we should form an alliance with AAP for the same, that’s the thinking of a majority of leaders.”
He hinted that all was not lost and that “Our president Rahul Gandhi will take a decision in a few days’ time. The policy of our party as decided by the working committee is to go for an alliance with the parties who are opposed to BJP. I hope Delhi leaders will also follow this policy decision of the Congress.”