HP CM Slams BJP for Fielding Congress Rebels in Bypolls

| | Kangra
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HP CM Slams BJP for Fielding Congress Rebels in Bypolls

Monday, 22 April 2024 | PNS | Kangra

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu on Sunday did not hold back in his criticism of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for their decision to field six Congress rebels in the upcoming byelections. Sukhu vehemently expressed his disapproval of the BJP's move, labeling it as a betrayal of democratic principles and an opportunistic approach to politics.


“The BJP’s decision to field Congress rebels is unacceptable and goes against the spirit of democracy. By giving tickets to those who have defected from our party, the BJP is showing a lack of respect for democratic norms and values. Despite this, we, the Congress, remain steadfast in our commitment to democratic principles,” Sukhu declared.


Asserting the Congress’ right to determine its own candidates, Sukhu emphasized that the party would soon announce the names of its candidates for the remaining parliamentary constituencies and assembly by-elections. “The BJP has no right to talk about the ticket distribution of the Congress. BJP has given tickets to Congress rebels. We have 40 days left until the elections, and we are actively preparing to contest. Our Ministers and leaders are tirelessly campaigning in various constituencies, connecting with voters, and highlighting our vision for the state…Voters will give a befitting reply to how the BJP has tried to topple the government,” he added.


The BJP's decision to nominate six disqualified Congress rebel MLAs for the Assembly by-polls has stirred controversy across the political spectrum. These rebels, who recently switched allegiance to the BJP, are now being fielded in elections scheduled for the four Lok Sabha seats in Himachal Pradesh and bypolls for six assembly constituencies left vacant due to their disqualification.


Sukhu’s remarks underscored the Congress's historical role in upholding democracy and national security. “Throughout history, the Congress party has been at the forefront of defending democratic principles and safeguarding the security of our nation. The sacrifices made by two Prime Ministers from our party for the unity and integrity of our country are a testament to our commitment to democratic values,” he emphasized.


Highlighting the Congress’ contribution to strengthening democratic institutions, Sukhu pointed out landmark initiatives such as providing 33 per cent reservations to women in the Panchayati Raj system. “The Congress has laid a strong foundation for democracy through progressive policies aimed at empowering marginalized communities and ensuring equal representation for all,” he remarked.


Sukhu reiterated the Congress’ unwavering dedication to democratic ideals and its determination to uphold the integrity of the electoral process. “As we approach the elections, we call upon the people of Himachal Pradesh to support us in our mission to protect and strengthen democracy in our state,” he concluded, urging voters to choose the Congress as the party that stands for democratic values and inclusive governance.


The political arena in Himachal Pradesh is gearing up for crucial elections, with voting scheduled for June 1 for the state's four Lok Sabha seats and six assembly constituencies. These assembly seats were left vacant following the disqualification of rebel Congress MLAs who defied party directives during crucial legislative votes.


Facing dissent on allocating tickets to Cong rebels, BJP may change candidates: Dy CM

Una: Himachal Pradesh’s political landscape heated up as senior Congress leader and Deputy Chief Minister Mukesh Agnihotri on Sunday launched a scathing attack on the BJP's ticket distribution strategy. Agnihotri expressed his dismay over the BJP’s decision to allocate tickets to Congress’ former MLAs, who switched sides to the saffron party after facing disqualification from the state assembly.


Agnihotri, addressing the media, highlighted the discontent within the BJP ranks, stating that the party cadre felt suffocated by the nomination of these six rebels. These individuals had previously voted in favour of the BJP's candidate, Harsh Mahajan, during the Rajya Sabha elections.


Deputy Chief Minister suggested that the BJP might face internal dissent due to its ticket allocation, hinting at the possibility of candidate changes for the upcoming assembly bypolls.


Asserting confidence in the Congress’ unity and electoral prospects, Agnihotri stated that the party was poised to clinch victory in all four Lok Sabha seats and the six assembly segments.


No possibility of candidate changes for bypolls: BJP hits back

Shimla: Swiftly retaliating against Deputy Chief Minister Mukesh Agnihotri’s claims, BJP leader Sat Pal Satti on Sunday refuted any possibility of candidate changes for the bypolls and accused the Congress of internal strife and incompetence. Satti alleged that the Congress’ inability to finalize candidates for two Lok Sabha seats and six assembly constituencies showcased the party's dwindling influence and organizational inefficiency.


Further lambasting the Congress, Satti criticized the alleged prevalence of corruption in the state and highlighted the purported lack of coordination between the party and the government. He asserted that Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu and Deputy Chief Minister Agnihotri were struggling to find suitable candidates for their respective constituencies due to this disarray.


Satti contended that internal discord plagued the Congress, with the party’s high command rejecting candidates proposed by the state leadership.


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