Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said there is a strong undercurrent in the country in favour of the opposition’s lead alliance of the INDIA bloc and that the BJP will find it difficult to cross 150 seats in the Lok Sabha elections. Polling for the first of the seven-phase elections will be held on April 19.

Gandhi, who is fighting again from Wayanad in Kerala, is still undecided on choosing Amethi, where he lost last time to BJP’s Smriti Irani, as his second seat to contest Lok Sabha elections. He said that he will follow “whatever order” he gets from his party. “On Amethi, the party will decide. Whatever order I get, I will abide by that,” he said. “In our party, these decisions are taken in the CEC (Central Election Committee) meeting,” he stated at a press conference jointly addressed with SP chief Akhilesh Yadav in Ghaziabad.

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav agreed with Gandhi, as he stated that “winds of change” are blowing from western Uttar Pradesh which will ensure “clean sweep” from Ghaziabad to Ghazipur for the INDIA bloc.

Both the leaders attacked the NDA government, with Gandhi describing electoral bonds as the “world’s biggest extortion scheme” and alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the “champion of corruption”.

Rahul Gandhi said that unemployment and price rise are some of the big issues in the polls but the BJP, is engaged in diverting attention from it. At the press meet, Congress general secretaries Jairam Ramesh and Avinash Pande, and Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Ajai Rai, were among the leaders present at the presser.

“Sometimes the prime minister goes underwater in the ocean and sometimes he is on a seaplane but he does not talk about issues,” Rahul said.

Gandhi, referring to an interview Modi gave, said it was “scripted” and a “flop show”. Clarifying on electoral bonds, Modi had said the scheme was brought for transparency in election funding. If that is the case, then why did the Supreme Court discontinue them, Gandhi asked.

“If you wanted to bring transparency, then why were the names of those who donated thousands of crores (of rupees) to the BJP hidden?” Why were the dates on which the companies made donations to the BJP hidden, he asked.

“It was found that a company got a contract for thousands of crores (of rupees) and after a few days, that company made a donation to the BJP. There was a CBI or an ED inquiry on a firm, and after 10-15 days, that firm made a donation to the BJP and that inquiry was ended,” Gandhi charged.