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Posted at: Mar 21, 2017, 1:24 AM; last updated: Mar 21, 2017, 1:24 AM (IST)

UP pact: Cong introspects

Aditi Tandon

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 20

Alliance with the Samajwadi Party came in for heated discussions at daylong deliberations UP Congress held yesterday to discuss the party’s embarrassing loss in state elections.

Presided over by UP Congress president Raj Babbar, the introspection meet concluded that the Congress alliance with SP came rather late in the day and confused people rather than galvanise them. Though the meeting did not discount the worth of the alliance, it agreed that delay in forging a tie-up led to non-cooperation between the cadres of SP and Congress in the state and vote transfer did not happen as expected.

“The alliance was required but it should have been forged well in advance of the elections. We should have issued a single list of candidates. What harmed our prospects was delayed announcement of the alliance and the fact that in several seats, both SP and Congress candidates were in the fray,” a senior UP Congress leader said today.

The party strategists in the state, meanwhile, still don’t consider Congress’ performance as indicative of any crisis. “More than the SP and the Congress, it is the BSP that should be worried. Mayawati’s vote banks transferred to BJP massively leading to incremental gains for the saffron forces. They won not so much because of their own strategy as for BSP’s eroded base,” said a Congress leader who attended the meeting in Lucknow yesterday.

The meeting lasted eight hours and all 105 Congress candidates, including the seven who won, were engaged on reasons for the debacle.

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