Exodus of prominent leaders jolting UP Congress prospects in 2022 polls

Believed to be quite close to Priyanka Gandhi and Congress’s face in eastern UP, Lalitesh also expressed his concern over the way party was being led.

Published: 02nd October 2021 04:30 PM  |   Last Updated: 02nd October 2021 04:30 PM   |  A+A-

Priyanka Gandhi.

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: At a time when Congress party is struggling hard to revive its organisation in Uttar Pradesh with the intent to project itself as the only option to the BJP, it is getting jolt after jolt with prominent faces leaving it for greener pastures.

This week has been quite happening for the grand old party when party’s UP in charge Priyanka Gandhi Vadra was in Lucknow on a five-day tourney to review party’s poll preparedness. As senior leaders as Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC) vice-president and former MLA Gayadeen Anuragi and former party MLA Vinod Chaturvedi, joined the Samajwadi Party on Friday.

Both Anuragi and Chaturvedi, joined the SP barely a few hours after Priyanka left for Delhi. Venting their discontent with the way party was functioning, both the leaders said that they were feeling muffled and sidelined in the organisation. However, both had got the opportunity to meet the AICC general secretary
during her stay in Lucknow this week.

Besides Anuragi and Chaturvedi, Lalitesh Pati Tripathi, another UPCC Vice-president and scion of Kamla Pati Tripathi clan gave the party a jolt last week when he announced his resignation from the primary membership of Congress.

Believed to be quite close to Priyanka Gandhi and Congress’s face in eastern UP, Lalitesh also expressed his concern over the way party was being led.

However, party insiders claim that many more, especially those who will be denied tickets in the upcoming assembly polls, may switch loyalties in the coming weeks.

One such most prominent faces of UP politics, especially, of western UP is Imran Masood who has been giving indications of switching sides to SP. All praise for SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, Masood recently exhorted the Congress leadership to join hands with SP, “the major opposition party”  to defeat the saffron
forces in UP.

UPCC president Ajay Kumar Lallu said the Congress was in a phase of revival and reconstruction. “The party leadership is fighting for the cause of people. Those who do not have the patience to sail through are leaving the Congress but the party will continue its fight with the support of its workers,” he said.

“If Masood leaves the Congress, it will be a big setback,” said another Congress leader. Masood has, however, denied reports and said he was only in favour of an alliance with the Samajwadi Party for the 2022 UP assembly election.

Former Union minister Jitin Prasada, ex-UPCC president Rita Bahuguna Joshi and former minister Jagdambika Pal are among other prominent Congress leaders who have left the party to join the BJP in the last few years.


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