Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, began brain storming sessions with various groups of party leaders at the UPCC headquarters here on Friday.
Priyanka arrived on a two-day visit in the morning and went straight to the residence of former union minister Sheila Kaul at Gokhale Marg.
The residence is being spruced up for Priyanka who plans to spend more time in Lucknow in the coming months. Sheila Kaul was the maternal aunt of Indira Gandhi.
Priyanka then paid floral tributes to Dr B.R. Ambedkar on his death anniversary before she initiated the meeting with the party’s strategy group.
She discussed preparations for the proposed December 14 rally of the Congress in Delhi and asked leaders to ensure maximum participation from UP.
Party sources said that she also sought suggestions from members of the group about reviving the party.
She discussed the party’s strategy in the prevailing political situation in the state and referred to recent incidents like Mainpuri and Unnao where women were targeted.
Sources said that Priyanka asked party leaders to adopt an aggressive posture in cases where the common people are at the receiving end. She said that efforts must be made to ensure the participation of cadres in party programmes.
She said that the revival of the Congress was necessary to defeat rivals and party workers must be motivated to participate in party programmes.
Prominent leaders who attended the strategy group meeting included UPCC president Ajay Kumar Lallu, CLP leader Aradhan Misra, former union ministers Rajiv Shukla, Jitin Prasada, Pradeep Jain Aditya, and state party leaders Imran Masood, Raj Kishore Singh, R K Chaudhary among others.
Priyanka, according to party sources, will hold marathon meetings till late in the night with party leaders.
“She is concerned about the December 14 rally and wants maximum participation from every district of UP,” said a leader who attended the meeting.
Surprisingly, there were no crowds at the UPCC headquarters on Friday, despite Priyanka Gandhi’s presence.
Most of the senior leaders did not turn up to welcome her and the youth leaders also stayed away.
“The UPCC president has not asked us to be present and we do not want to be shooed away if we go there,” said a Youth Congress leader.