Congress to sacrifice PM post for allies

Gautam Lahiri

18 May, 2019 12:00 AM printer

NEW DELHI: Indian opposition Congress has said that it will sacrifice the prime ministerial post for its alliance partners if it is voted to power.

The Indian Lok Sabha election, which started on April 11 in phases, will end on May 19. Poll results will be announced on May 23.

Both the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress are optimistic about their election victory.

Most of the pre-poll surveys show that the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) takes the lead over the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) in the polls.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expecting a second term, but Congress President Rahul Gandhi says his party is ready to sacrifice the prime ministerial post for its alliance if voted to power.

Congress thinks that it will get 130 seats while BJP may win in 150-160 constituencies.

Regional parties and alliances will bag the rest of 242 seats. BJP allies will get poor seats. BJP needs 272 seats to get a majority in the parliament and form government.

Congress leader and former health and family welfare minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said he is skeptical about Modi’s second term.

West Bengal chief minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee is reportedly keen to succeed Modi.

She has already sought support from Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao.

Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Nara Chandrababu Naidu, and Nationalist Congress Party supremo and Rajya Sabha member from Maharashtra Sharad Pawar and Orissa chief minister Naveen Patnaik are trying to forge an alliance against BJP.

“My party’s high command has already made it clear that the Congress is not averse to making a prime minister from any regional party,” Congress leader Gulam Nabi Azad said on Thursday.

However, BJP ally JD (U) has ruled out the possibility of any such alliance with Congress.

“We are close to BJP and are fighting the election with PM Modi as captain. We don’t believe in changing our captain,” said JD (U) leader KC Tyagi.