Gearing up to take on the BJP in its citadel of Bhoranj, the Congress today divided the Assembly segment into 10 sectors, each headed by a Cabinet minister and assisted by a team of MLAs and other senior Congress leaders.
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh is likely to campaign in the constituency which will go to the polls on April 9 after the winter session of the Assembly ends. Duties have been entrusted right up to the gram panchayat level. Sources said that the Chief Minister will campaign here for a day on March 26 and later for the last three four days before the polling but till then the Chief Parliamentary Secretaries (CPS), MLAs, former MLAs, chairmen and vice chairmen of boards and corporations have been entrusted duties and that too gram panchayat wise under the overall charge of a minister.
The Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee has deputed a team of a minimum of at least six to eight leaders in each of the 10 sectors, comprising of 44 panchayats that form part of the Bhoranj reserved Assembly constituency.
After declaring Prem Kaushal as its candidate, the Congress finally allotted ticket to Pramila Devi, once Zila Parishad member from Samirpur ward and member of the State Commission for Women.
Each sector having up to three, four or five panchayats will as such witness aggressive campaigning by the ruling party leaders. Tomorrow is the last date for withdrawal of nomination and it is only after this that a clear picture will emerge.
Barring Industry Minister Mukesh Agnihotri, all the ministers have been made in charge of one of the 120 sectors. He is likely to be made overall in-charge along with some other senior leaders.
Even as rebels, both from the BJP and the Congress, continue to remain in the fray, efforts are being made to persuade them to withdraw in favour of the party nominee. There are chances that Congress rebel Ramesh Dogra, who had contested the 2012 Assembly elections on the Congress ticket, might withdraw. However, as far as the BJP rebel Pawan Kumar is concerned, he doesn’t seem to be in a mood to oblige. However, it is only tomorrow that a clear picture will emerge.
Fear of defeat haunts Cong: Bindal
The fear of defeat is haunting the Congress government and the statement of Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh that “if we lost the Bhoranj seat our faith in democracy would be shaken”, itself showed his pain. This was stated by BJP chief spokesperson Rajiv Bindal.
Story: The Tribune