UP polls: Trinamool to contest more than 100 seats

Trinamool Congress said it will contest on its own over 100 seats in UP, apart from fighting assembly elections in Manipur, Goa and Uttarakhand.

Kolkata: In a bid to establish its presence
at the national level, the Trinamool Congress on Sunday said it
will contest on its own over 100 seats in Uttar Pradesh, apart
from fighting assembly elections in Manipur, Goa and

All India Triamool Congress general secretary Mukul Roy
told PTI that his party would contest on its own in 45 out of
60 seats in Manipur, all 40 seats in Goa in alliance with
regional parties and in some constituencies in the 70-member
Uttarakhand Assembly.

"We will contest more than 100 seats in Uttar Pradesh
alone. Our objective is to establish our party`s presence at
the national level, particularly the Hindi heartland
our leader Mamata Banerjee`s image of integrity and honesty,"
he said in an interview.

He dispelled suggestions that the Trinamool Congress was
going to test political waters in Uttar Pradesh to cut into
votes of the Congress with which the party`s relation had
soured recently over FDI in retail and Lokayukta provision of
the Lokpal and on other counts.

"It is not correct to say so. There is no such thinking
in our party while deciding to contest in the forthcoming UP
Assembly polls in so many seats," he said in response to a
Roy said that the Trinamool Congress would contest 11
seats out of 55 seats in the first of the seven-phase phase
polls in Uttar Pradesh on February 8.

"The Trinamool Congress will go it alone and will not
enter into a poll tie-up with any party in Uttar Pradesh,
Manipur and Uttarakhand," the Union minister of state for
shipping said.

Roy said the Trinamool state unit president in Goa and
former chief minister Wilfred D` Souza has been assigned the
responsibility of tying up with local parties.

"It is our feeling that the Trinamool Congress will do
well in Manipur and Goa and also be able to establish its
presence in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand," he said.

He said the eight MLAs belonging to parties like the
Congress, the CPI and the Manipur People`s Party, six former
ministers and two former deputy speakers would be among the 45
candidates Trinamool Congress would put up for the 10th state
Assembly polls slated for January 28.

Despite being a new party in Manipur, Trinamool Congress
grabbed its maiden seat in the state Assembly after
its candidate K Sharat Singh defeated the ruling Congress in
the by-election to the Konthoujam constituency in February,
last year.

"People from different parts of the country are
contacting us and want to see the presence of Trinamool
Congress in their states. The party, which has dethroned
the Left Front from power after its uninterrupted 34 years of
rule in West Bengal, has already established its presence
in the legislative assemblies of Assam, Manipur and Arunachal
Pradesh also."

Roy said Trinamool Congress is a party for `Ma, Mati and
Manush` and its opposition to various UPA government policies
like FDA in retail, petrol price hike and Lokayukta provision
of the Lokpal Bill had been appreciated in `many quarters`.