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Priyanka to visit Lucknow on Monday, take stock of her new turf

Priyanka Gandhi was appointed a Congress general secretary last month, a move that ended years of speculation over her induction into the party.

Priyanka to visit Lucknow on Monday, take stock of her new turf

Lucknow/New Delhi: Priyanka Gandhi Vadra will arrive in Lucknow Monday on her first trip to the state after being appointed the Congress general secretary in charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh.

She will be accompanied by Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Jyotiraditya Scindia, who is now general secretary for western UP - all three visiting the crucial state for the first time after the appointments announced last month.

Congress workers are planning a road show when the three leaders travel from the airport to the party's state headquarter.

The party in Uttar Pradesh is seeing the visit as the virtual launch of the Congress campaign in the state, ahead of the coming Lok Sabha elections.

The decision on the visit was taken at a meeting in Delhi between the Congress chief, the two general secretaries for Uttar Pradesh and general secretary (organisation) K C Venugopal, the party said.

The two general secretaries will interact with party workers at the state Congress office in Lucknow on Feb 12, 13 and 14, Venugopal told reporters.

Rahul Gandhi is likely to return the same day, UP Congress spokesperson Anshu Awasthi said.

After her brief appearance before the media while dropping off husband Robert Vadra at the Enforcement Directorate office in Delhi on Wednesday, the Lucknow visit will mark her first public appearance after formally joining the party.

The two newly appointed incharges for Uttar Pradesh will take stock of the party's preparation for the polls. "The impending visit by the senior leaders, especially Priyanka Gandhi, has enthused party workers," Awasthi said.

Priyanka Gandhi was appointed a Congress general secretary last month, a move that ended years of speculation over her induction into the party.

Home to 80 Lok Sabha seats, Uttar Pradesh sends the highest number of MPs to Parliament, making it a key electoral battleground.

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party faces a challenge in the state from the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj alliance, while the Congress is trying hard to retrieve lost ground.

Amethi and Rae Bareli, the Lok Sabha seats held by Priyanka Gandhi's brother Rahul Gandhi and mother Sonia Gandhi, are in eastern Uttar Pradesh.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Varanasi constituency and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath's stronghold Gorakhpur are also part of this region.