BJP days in Himachal numbered – Anand Sharma

Shimla: State Congress leadership held an impressive Parivartan Rally at Seri Munch in Mandi yesterday that besides party president Kaul Singh Thakur was addressed by union minister Anand Sharma and other senior leaders.

Embroiled in a corruption case in which a trial court has framed charges, Virbhadra Singh, who resigned from the union cabinet, was however, conspicuously absent at the large public gathering even though he is the MP from Mandi.

With rumours afloat that the public rally had been cancelled, the party office issued an early statement that the proposed public meeting was to be held according to schedule and the misinformation campaign was the work of detractors.

Speaking at the gathering Union Minister Anand Sharma said the BJP led state government was a thankless one and was unnecessarily indulging in false propaganda about step-motherly treatment being meted out to it in a discriminatory manner by the central government.

Short on resource, he said, the hill is surviving on the aid extended by the central government which has been making regular and consistent increases into allocation of funds for towards the state.

The senior congress minister also reminded congress men to remain within political discipline and not be carried away by individuals.

“The party is bigger than some individuals”, he said, dropping broad hints at a congress faction who are said to have attempted a sabotage of the days rally in wake of resignation of Virbhadra Singh from the union cabinet.

The Virbhadra faction is said to have been kept busy in preparing to give Virbhadra a rousing welcome today as he arrives by road in Shimla after demitting office.

State congress president Kaul Singh Thakur, leader of the opposition Vidya Stokes and party incharge for Himachal, Chaudhary Birender Singh talked about turning BJP’s mission repeat into a mission defeat campaign.

Raising the issues of land mafia being active, Kaul Singh said that land sharks were getting state patronage and blatant violations in the law had taken place.

The congress leader who has declared his intent to being in the race for chief minister post said BJP had filed to meet its election promise of setting up and medical college in Mandi and it was only the UPA government under Manmohan Singh that had approved and ESI Medical College for the Mandi township.

Driving a point into the rival party factions, some of the speakers pointed out the Congress leaderships resolve about zero tolerance to corruption.

KY Singh is a political observer and a senior journalist with an interest in a diverse set of issues related to Himachal Pradesh and other mountain states. He lives in Shimla.

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