New Delhi: Though the Congress may make tall claims in context to the preparations for the coming Uttar Pradesh elections, the party is still struggling to finalise the first list of party candidates.

After missing the deadline on several occasions, the party is still not in a position to declare the names of 60 candidates from UP. Ironically, the party had undertaken a long and a detailed procedure to identify the deserving candidates for UP polls.

Even though the thrust was said to be on the youngsters, the party managed to review the names of candidates who had contested the 2007 assembly elections.

According to sources, the present list of 60 candidates contains the names of Congress legislators, former MPs and candidates who did not win despite getting over 25,000 votes in the last assembly elections.

As per the sources, the Congress has set selection formula for the first list of candidates. In line with selection criteria, the party has decided to issue tickets to 20 existing candidates.

The party has agreed to give election tickets to candidates who won 25,000 votes in last election in the state provided they are active in their constituency.

Besides, the Congress has also agreed to give tickets to candidates who stood second in the 2007 assembly polls.

However, the declaration of the first list hangs in a balance as party president Sonia Gandhi has yet not returned to India after undergoing a surgery in US.

JPN/Bureau