Sonia Gandhi To Have Final Say In Selecting Himachal Congress Election Candidates

Shimla: The central selection committee meeting of the congress party at Delhi today, for setting out norms to shortlist prospective elections candidates turned out to be a damp squib as the senior leaders passed a single line resolution authorizing party president Sonia Gandhi to have the final say in selecting the election candidates for the state.Party spokesman Kuldeep Rathore disclosed that the meeting was chaired by RK Dhawan, the party incharge for the state and senior leaders like chief minister Virbhadra Singh, Vidya Stokes, Anand Sharma, Kaul Singh Thakur, Ram Lal Thakur, Chandresh Kumari and others were present.

Chandresh Kumari, who was recently inducted into the central selection committee revealed that the applicant list would go before a screening committee before it is sent to the party president for approval. The screening committee is scheduled to meet on 18th November.

Campaign schedule of star campaigners for the Himachal election were also discussed at today’s meeting, said Chandresh Kumari.

Not wishing to be named a senior minister who was present at the meeting revealed that after the formal meeting most leaders individually met RK Dhawan, party incharge for Himachal, and lobbied for other candidates as well expressed their views about the norms that should be applied for selecting the election candidates.

Another congressman said that the meeting was held in a cordial environment and there was no discussion about whether loyalty to party discipline should be given precedence over winning prospects of a candidate, though he may have rebelled and gone onto defeat the official party candidate in the last election.

The party has received over 400 applications seeking tickets for the 65 assembly segments that in the second phase go to the polls in 19th December.

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