Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel will meet Congress interim Chief Sonia Gandhi on Friday and will hold discussions regarding the upcoming Uttar Pradesh assembly elections, sources said.

Ahead of the assembly elections in seven states scheduled to be held next year, Congress on October 2 appointed Baghel as All India Congress Committee (AICC) senior observer for the ensuing polls in Uttar Pradesh.

“Congress President has appointed Bhupesh Baghel, Chief Minister, Chhattisgarh as AICC Senior Observer for the ensuing Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, with immediate effect,” read the official communique by the Congress party.

In a tweet, Baghel had said, “Hon’ble National President Smt. Sonia Gandhi ji has instructed me to be an observer for the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. It’s a big responsibility. I will try my best to live up to the expectations of the top leadership. Resolve to change, Congress is the only option.”

The state of Uttar Pradesh is scheduled to hold an Assembly election in 2022.

In the 2017 Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, the Bharatiya Janata Party bagged 312 seats out of the 403-seat Uttar Pradesh Assembly while Samajwadi Party (SP) bagged 47 seats, Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) won 19 and Congress could manage to win only seven seats. The rest of the seats were bagged by other candidates.
Notably, the Congress party has been out of power in the state since 1989, that is, for more than 30 years. The last Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh representing the Congress party was Narayan Dutt Tiwari from June 1988 to December 1989.

Also, the Amethi Lok Sabha seat which remained loyal to the Gandhi family was taken away in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections as Congress leader Rahul Gandhi was defeated by BJP leader Smriti Irani.

As of now, the daughter of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, has been appointed as the general secretary of the All India Congress Committee in charge of Uttar Pradesh.

Meanwhile, Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Uttarakhand, Manipur, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat are due next year. Among these seven states, six are currently ruled by BJP or BJP-led coalition. Only, Punjab is ruled by the Congress government. (ANI)