Wed, Dec 7, 2016 | updated 03:59 PM IST

Sheila's appointment won't change Congress' electoral fortunes in UP: BJP, SP

Updated: Jul 15, 2016 07:52 IST

New Delhi, July 15 (ANI): Taking a dig at the Congress Party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Samajwadi Party (SP) has said its move to appoint Sheila Dikshit, who was rejected by the people of Delhi, as their chief ministerial candidate in Uttar Pradesh, will not have any impact on their prospects in the state's electoral battle.

BJP national secretary Srikant Sharma said the Congress does not have any presence in the state and accused them of being hand-in-glove with successive Samajwadi Party and BSP governments in corrupt practices in Uttar Pradesh.

"Earlier there were discussions that Rahul Gandhi would be projected, then Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's name came up, but now they have projected Sheila Dikshit. Congress doesn't have presence in Uttar Pradesh. Congress kept supporting successive corrupt governments in the state," he told ANI.

"The state is in bad shape, law and order is bad, education system is crippled, there is no water, electricity or proper roads. The state needs a change. The BSP and the SP looted the state with the help of the Congress," he added.

Meanwhile, Samajwadi Party leader Gaurav Bhatia said, "It is now clear that the Congress, which lacks ideology, is going to the Uttar Pradesh elections as a distressed and weak party."

He further said the grand old party is now finding its future in people like Imran Masood, who has been appointed as one of the vice presidents of the Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee.

"Sheila Dikshit is that candidate who lost her assembly seat in the Delhi assembly polls. She is the same Sheila Dikshit, under whose reign CWG and various scams took place. I don't think that Sheila Dikshit, who has been rejected by (people) Delhi, is an apt choice as the chief ministerial candidate of such a big an important state like Uttar Pradesh," he told ANI.

Dikshit, who is 78 years of age, however, said the Uttar Pradesh polls will definitely be a challenge for the Congress.

Dikshit's choice for the top post comes amid speculations that Prashant Kishore, who has been roped in as the party's poll strategist for Uttar Pradesh, is of the view that a Brahmin face should represent the Congress in the politically crucial state.

Dikshit is the daughter-in-law of prominent Congress leader from Uttar Pradesh Uma Shankar Dikshit, who was a Brahmin face and had served as a union minister and governor for a long time. This move can be seen as an attempt by the Congress Party's part to win back its traditional upper caste voters.

Dikshit, who served thrice as the Delhi Chief Minister before AAP's Arvind Kejriwal defeated her with a record mandate in December 2013, had stated after her defeat that she was ready for any role which the party assigns to her. (ANI)