Home Top News In UP Seat-Sharing Breakthrough, Sonia, Priyanka Gandhi Played Key Roles

In UP Seat-Sharing Breakthrough, Sonia, Priyanka Gandhi Played Key Roles

In UP Seat-Sharing Breakthrough, Sonia, Priyanka Gandhi Played Key Roles


The breakthrough, sources say, was achieved after an intervention by Priyanka and Sonia Gandhi

New Delhi:

Samajwadi Party Chief Akhilesh Yadav today said there was no conflict with the Congress after weeks of blowing hot and cold. The breakthrough, sources say, could be achieved after an intervention by senior Congress leader Sonia Gandhi and her daughter and party general secretary, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.

According to sources, Ms Vadra initiated the talks and got both parties to the negotiation table. She first spoke with her brother Rahul Gandhi – whose Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra is in Uttar Pradesh – and then with Mr Yadav to break the deadlock on Lok Sabha elections seat-sharing in the state and give a final shape to the alliance at the earliest, they said.

Mr Yadav’s party will contest 62 seats, with 17 reserved for the Congress and one left to Chandrashekhar Azad’s Azad Samaj Party.

The Congress had earlier sought 19 seats for itself.

The Congress has agreed to give up Moradabad seat after the talks, sources said. In return, the Samajwadi Party agreed to withdraw its candidate from Varanasi. The Congress high command has asked for two more changes – swap Sitapur and Hathras – Samajwadi Party has agreed to this. Secondly, give Shravasti to the Congress in exchange for either Bulandshahr or Mathura. Akhilesh Yadav’s party has given the Mathura seat to the Congress.

After announcing the Congress will fight 17 seats in the state, Uttar Pradesh Congress in-charge Avinash Pandey thanked Priyanka Gandhi for “playing a key role in this”.

Sonia Gandhi – who recently vacated her Rae Bareli Lok Sabha seat to move to Rajya Sabha – also helped the Congress leaders to come around to the Samajwadi Party’s ambition in Uttar Pradesh. She told party leaders that their demands were “unreasonable and unrealistic”, the sources said.

The Samajwadi Party and Congress are partners in the INDIA bloc. The success of the seat-sharing talks between the two are crucial, especially after the failure of such talks with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has decided to contest in her state alone. Its another ally AAP has also decided to go solo in Punjab. Delhi Chief Minister and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal said the Congress and his party had “mutually agreed” to contest Lok Sabha seats in Punjab separately.

“All is well that ends well. Yes, there will be an alliance. There is no conflict. Everything will be out and clear soon,” a smiling Akhilesh Yadav told reporters.

Akhilesh Yadav who earlier had accepted the invitation from Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge to join the Yatra saying that he would participate in the Yatra in Amethi or Rae Bareli, later said his participation was conditional to a decision on seat sharing.

The Samajwadi Party Chief could now join the yatra on February 24-25 when it hits Moradabad in Western UP.



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