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Congress meeting in Delhi discusses strategy to counter BJP in Lok Sabha polls – Times of India

PATNA: Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and senior party leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday held a meeting with their Bihar leaders in Delhi to discuss strategy for how to counter the BJP-led NDA in the next year’s 2024 Lok Sabha elections and also the issue of seat-sharing.
Informed sources said the Congress party wants at least 9-10 seats to contest although they said the party leadership has a “flexible” approach over the issue as their main target is to defeat the BJP.
Congress legislature party leader in the state assembly Shakeel Ahmad Khan described Tuesday’s meeting as very “meaningful” which discussed ways about how to strengthen the INDIA bloc through their actions. “We were of the view that no alliance partner should be ignored,” Khan told the TOI, adding the tasks were also given to the party workers. Some 40 leaders from the state attended the meeting.
“It doesn’t matter how many seats the Congress gets under the seat-sharing arrangement; what is important is that the party workers should actively work for each of the total 40 LS seats in the state,” Khan said. He informed that they had plenty of issues to counter the NDA in the elections.
Prominent leaders who attended the meeting included party general secretary KC Venugopal, newly-appointed Bihar in-charge Mohan Prakash, state president Akhilesh Prasad Singh, former president Anil Kumar Sharma, Kishanganj MP Dr Jawed, Ranjita Ranjan, Chandan Yadav, Pratima Kumari and Kanhaiya Kumar.
Reports said today’s meeting was a precursor to a crucial meeting of the alliance committee of the Congress to be held on December 29 which is likely to take a decision over seat sharing. “We held detailed discussions on the preparations for Lok Sabha elections. We have made an action plan which will be taken forward,” state Congress president told the media after the meeting.
Kharge took to X to inform the Grand Alliance government in Bihar was working strongly and they were committed to social justice. “For the progress, prosperity and peace of Bihar, every Congress worker is ready to reach out to the people with full hard work and live up to the aspirations of the people of Bihar,” Kharge posted on X.
Informed sources said the state party leaders would be demanding at least 9-10 LS seats for the Congress under the seat-sharing arrangement. “Although we are flexible with our demands. Our main concern is to defeat the BJP in the elections,” a source who was present at the meeting said.
In the last 2019 LS polls, the Congress had been spared nine seats whereas a lion’s share of 20 seats had gone to the RJD. Similarly, the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP), then headed by Upendra Kushwaha, was given five seats while three seats each came to the share of HAM (S) and VIP who were then part of the Grand Alliance.
The Grand Alliance was able to win only one seat out of 40 and the party which achieved that feat was the Congress in Kishanganj. Right now, Kushwaha who has formed his new outfit Rashtriya Lok Janada Dal (RLJD) and HAM(S) are part of the NDA whereas VIP led by Mukesh Sahni is not a part of any alliance so far.

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