Worried at the confusion in over a dozen seats where both it and alliance partner had named candidates, the Congress on Monday asked four of its candidates to back out in favor of the Samajwadi Party.
State unit spokesman Satyadev Tripathi said that the party leadership had asked Maroof Khan (Lucknow Central), Hanuman Prasad (Mankapur), Anil Singh (Sohratgarh) and Bhagatram Mishra (Payagpur) to withdraw their nominations.
The withdrawal of the Congress candidates, sources told was discussed between Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and UP Chief Cinister Akhilesh Yadav during their meeting here recently.
Akhilesh Yadav had emphasised on the need of Congress backing out, from seats like Lucknow Central since it was drawing media attention and the message emanating from there on was "complete lack of coordination and abundant confusion" between the two parties. Gandhi was understood to have taken up the issue with senior party leaders including General Secretary in-charge of UP Ghulam Nabi Azad and a decision was taken on Monday.
There are however still over eight seats, including some in Amethi-Rae Bareily – the strongholds of the Gandhi family where both parties have fielded candidates.