Cong general body to meet at Kanpur after 2 decades

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Lucknow, Mar 20 (UNI) After a 26-year gap, Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee will hold its general body meeting and open session at Kanpur on March 30 and 31, where AICC president Sonia Gandhi and general secretary Rahul Gandhi will launch their Lok Sabha poll campaign in the state.

While Mr Rahul Gandhi will inguaurate the session in the morning of March 30 and participate in all the sittings, Ms Gandhi will be the chief guest at the concluding session and later address a public meeting at Phoolbagh ground.

The main objective of the meeting would be to discuss the strategy for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, said UP Congress president Rita Bahuguna Joshi here today.

Addressing a press conference, Ms Joshi said Rahul will be present at the meeting on both the days and even chair all the important meetings of the members of the state coordination committee, MPs and legislators in the evening of March 30 to discuss the names of the candidates in the LS polls.

The two-day meeting where about 2,000 Congress leaders, including the AICC and PCC members along with special invitees would deliberate upon several issues and adopt two resolutions -- political and economic.

Ms Joshi said the open convention would be held at Motijeel ground, where all arrangements had been made for the function to hold three sessions, two on the first day and one on the last day.

''The open session would be historic of its kind, as it is being held after 26 years besides being held on the backdrop of the people oriented central budget and completion of 10 years of political career of Ms Gandhi,'' she added.

The last open session and general body meeting of the UPCC was held in Kanpur itself in 1992.

Yesterday, senior Congress leaders, including former MP Chief Minister and UP in charge Digvijay Singh, Union Minister of State for Home Sriprakash Jaiswal, also a local MP, Congress legislature party leader Pramod Tiwari and Ms Joshi visited Kanpur to take stock of the preparations.

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