Lucknow, Jan 13 : Not averse to a post poll alliance with the SP-BSP led Mahagathbandhan in Uttar Pradesh to keep BJP out of the government, Congress on Sunday announced to contest all 80 Lok Sabha seats in the state.
"We would be thankful to any secular party in the country who will defeat BJP, but Congress is the only party, which can lead the campaign against BJP in the national prospect," said Congress General Secretary and In-charge of Uttar Pradesh Gulam Nahi Azad here, after holding a meeting with the state senior leaders.
Though admitting that at first they wanted to be part of the Mahagathbandhan in UP, but when SP and BSP announced their own alliance, then 'we are ready to contest the polls alone'.
"In the post-poll scenario, no one can say what will happen, but it is sure that secular forces will unite against BJP to remove them from the Centre," he said, in presence of state leaders like Sanjay Singh, Pramod Tiwari, Jitin Prasada and state president Raj Babbar.
Announcing that very soon party president Rahul Gandhi will launch rallies at different places in the state, in support of party candidates, Mr Azad, who is the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, made it clear that some regional parties can too join them in the state, thus predicting the inclusion of Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) in their fold.
Claiming that there is no Prime Minister candidature issue before the political parties, he said everything could be said only after the elections.
When asked about contesting the elections alone, which can benefit BJP over triangular contest in UP seats, he said Congress would be the largest party in the state after the polls and it will repeat the feat like did in 2009.
Mr Azad said, "There was a demand from the party rank and file for contesting the elections alone in UP, which had been accepted by the leadership and now the party will contest the elections with full strength." (UNI)