Congress leaders will have to stay up all night to meet the nine-day deadline set by party chief Sonia Gandhi for them to shortlist candidates for the Lok Sabha polls.
At a meeting on Tuesday, Sonia directed her general secretaries, state-in-charges and screening committee members to prepare their list by March 5 so that the Central Election Committee (CEC) she presides over can start clearing names and finalise them by mid-March.
This applies also to the eight states where the party has allies or is looking for one. Later, Sonia told those in charge of these states, to firm up seat sharing talks with allies.
Instructions are also in store for MPs on Wednesday when she addresses the final meeting of the Congress Parliamentary Party before they hit the campaign trail.