Lucknow, Jan 18: A day after Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi was anointed campaign chief of the Congress for the Lok Sabha polls, the election committee of Uttar Pradesh was formed Saturday.
Announcing this, state Congress president Nirmal Khatri said that Congress president Sonia Gandhi had ratified the names for the election committee, following which general secretary in-charge of Uttar Pradesh, Madhusudan Mistry, constituted the high-powered committee.
The committee, which will screen the names of prospective candidates for the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls and also devise a campaign and a winning strategy, would comprise Rahul Gandhi, Nirmal Khatri, Pradeep Mathur, union Steel Minister Beni Prasad Verma, Minister for External Affairs and Farrukhabad MP Salman Khursheed, union Coal Minister Sri Prakash Jaiswal, R.P.N. Singh, Pradeep Jain Aditya, Jatin Prasad, P.L. Punia, Raj Babbar, Shiv Balak Pasi and Jagdambika Pal.
Among other members of the committee are Begum Noor Bano from Rampur, Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Promod Tiwari, Ansuiyya Sharma, Kamla Sahini, Naseeb Pathan, president of Uttar Pradesh Women’s Congress Meera Singh and Prahlad Dwivedi.
Khatri also said that the first meeting of the newly formed committee would be held at the party office in the state capital Jan 22.
Uttar Pradesh is crucial for the Congress party, which holds 21 of the state’s 80 Lok Sabha seats. The party aims at retaining that number of seats, even as daunting challenges are posed by the Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, Bharatiya Janata Party and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).