Rahul Gandhi's experiment of selecting candidates through primary system will not work in Uttar Pradesh, a senior party leader from the state today said and claimed that the party's campaigning for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls was not on the right track in the state.
Union minister Beni Prasad Verma said Congress will win as many as 50 seats if tickets are distributed properly and "campaigning is done properly. Verma warned the party against selecting candidates the way it was done in the the previous elections, which he claimed had harmed the party. "Rahul Gandhi's initiative is pure, it is democratic. But environment in Uttar Pradesh is not conducive to follow this system to select the candidates," he told reporters today.
Claiming that his party has the largest support base in the state as well as support of the 20 per cent Muslim population, Verma said Congress will win as many as 50 seats "if tickets are distributed properly and campaigning is done properly". "If tickets are distributed the way they were done last time, we cannot do anything, but if tickets are distributed properly and honestly, I can guarantee that Congress will win 50 seats from UP. 20 per cent Muslims are looking at us," he said. "We pre-warn our leadership. Last time, we said Congress will win at least 30 seats, but Congress did not contest properly and did not contest in 18 seats. It contested from 58 seats and won from 22 seats," he said. He warned the Congress leadership against falling prey to whims of tall party leaders in Uttar Pradesh in ticket distribution in the state.
Slamming BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and his remarks to oust Congress from the country, he said that "Congress cannot be defeated as it is in the DNA of the country".
Taking a jibe at the trio of Modi, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal for holding different rallies in the state on the same day, Verma said all of them will "flop" in the state.
Targetting Modi for his promise to deliver a corruption free government in the country under his leadership, Verma said Modi should first talk about the three ministers in his government who are facing corruption charges. He also sought to expose Modi for his concerns about the poor and the backward classes, saying that while he as a minister in UP he had reserved 27 per cent seats for backward classes in government jobs, Modi has failed to do so in Gujarat. "In Gurajat, only seven per reservation is there for the backward classes and Modi is talking about development in his states. There is no reservation in panchayats," Verma said.
He said neither Modi or Mulayam are "true patriots" of the country and both are together to grab power.
Hitting out at Mulayam for espousing the cause of the Muslims, he said the SP chief did little to alleviate the sufferings of the riot victims of Muzaffarnagar. "We sent blankets to the relief camps to provide them shelter from cold but Mulayam ran bulldozers in the relief camps," he claimed.
Raking up the issue of large scale police recruitment in Uttar Pradesh when Mulayam was the chief minister, he said 16,000 of the 22,500 recruited were from his caste.
Slamming the functioning of the SP-led government in the state, "Mulayam is running a government of goons and corruption".