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Rahul Gandhi makes big claim, says "BJP will be limited to 150 seats"

Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh): Addressing a joint press conference with Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said there is a strong undercurrent in favour of the opposition INDIA bloc in the Lok Sabha elections and the BJP will be limited to 150 seats.

"I do not do prediction of seats. 15-20 days ago I was thinking the BJP would win around 180 seats but now I think they will get 150 seats. We are getting reports from every state that we are improving. We have a very strong alliance in Uttar Pradesh and we will perform very well..." the former Congress president said.

When asked about whether he will contest the general elections from Amethi or Raebarelli, Gandhi said, "This is the BJP's question; very good. Whatever order I get, I will follow it. In our party, all these (selections of candidates) decisions are taken by the CEC."

Elaborating on the party's manifesto for the elections, Gandhi said, "In the last 10 years, PM Modi has reduced the system of employment generation by demonetization, by implementing the wrong GST and by supporting big billionaires like Adani. The first task is to once again strengthen employment, and for that, we have given 23 ideas in our manifesto. One idea is the revolutionary idea of the right to apprenticeship.

We have decided that we will give the right to apprenticeship to all the graduates and diploma holders in Uttar Pradesh. There will be training and we will deposit Rs 1 lakh per year in the bank accounts of the youth and we are giving these rights to crores of youth. We will make a law for paper leaks as well."

The sentiment of the former Congress president was also echoed by the Samajwadi party Chief who said that the INDIA bloc had emerged as a hope for the people.

"INDIA alliance is the new hope in the elections and as Rahul ji said that there are many things in his manifesto by which poverty can be eradicated. Adding to that I want to say that the day the farmers of our country will become happy, the day the farmers of the country will start getting remunerative prices for their crops, I understand that all the political parties and especially those who are the partners of INDIA alliance are saying that they will give MSP and the day the Indian government increases the income of the farmers, poverty will go away..."

The Congress is contesting only 17 seats in Uttar Pradesh in alliance with the SP, the two parties had also allied in 2017 during the assembly elections under the banner of "UP ke Ladke". However that alliance failed to have any impact with the BJP winning the election by an overwhelming three-quarters majority of 325 seats

Voting in Uttar Pradesh will be held in seven phases.

The Ghaziabad seat will witness a triangular contest. The BJP has declared Atul Garg as its candidate from the Ghaziabad constituency after Union Minister and the sitting BJP MP from Ghaziabad, Gen (retd) VK Singh, withdrew himself from the fray for the Lok Sabha polls.

Garg is set to face the INDIA bloc candidate and Congress leader Dolly Sharma, while the Bahujan Samaj Party has fielded Nand Kishore Pundir.In the 2019 general elections, proving all the arithmetic of the SP-BSP 'mahagatbandhan' in Uttar Pradesh wrong, the BJP and its ally Apna Dal(S) won 64 of the 80 Lok Sabha seats. The SP-BSP won 15 seats. 

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