Congress leaders pland different rallies in the state to prove the claim for chief Ministership.

Apr 09, 2012 16:12 | Poltics
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Vir Bhadra- Koul faction are working separately in  the state

Dharamsala/arvind Sharma

Show of strength for supremacy within Himachal Congress is widening with every days activities. Himachal has two union ministers from the state quota in UPA government Both Vir Bhadra Singh and Anand Sharma  shall show their size of political teeth on Tuesday April 10, in Himachal to prove the strength of their faction before the Vidhan Sabha elections slated to be held in the year end . As the political pundits have predicted that there shall be a change in government in the state, both these stalwarts fighting to achieve the supremacy.  While Virbhadra Singh would hold a get-together for party leaders at his residence in Shimla to celebrate his 50 years in politics, Anand Sharma would meet party leaders at Palampur, and shall also address a rally.

A Congress rally in Kangra district to be addressed by Union Minister Anand Sharma is likely to be a show of strength by a faction of the party's Himachal unit, which is planning to make it a grand affair. "A rousing reception awaits Sharma when he arrives in Kangra district on a two-day visit to address a rally in the Jawali Assembly constituency and lay the foundation stone of an office of the Regional Tea Board at Palampur," senior Congress leader and MLA G S Bali said. 151 motorcyclists and 101 cars shall lead the Cabinet minister from Gaggal airport of Dharamsala to Palampur and 51 welcome gates shall be erected along the 40 km route, he said. The rally to be held on April 10 .

After holding a successful congress rally in Jawali of Kangra recently , 5 times Ex CM of the state and presently union minister Vir bhadra singh organized another big rally at Una on Sunday. Talking to media  Singh said, “ I have the capacity to bring back Congress to power in the state . If high command asks I can work for the party and can fight elections from any constituency of the state.”

Vidya stokes/ Koul Singh camp is organizing Sharma’s rally, the first rally of Union Minister Anand Sharma in the area since he joined the central cabinet. However, Bali (another organizer) said there were no factions in the Congress' state unit and it was an official public rally of the party. "There are no camps in the party. The party is working under the leadership of Sonia Gandhi and all congress leaders are united and shall gather in unity in Palampur," he said. Sources said the programme of Anand Sharma will be dominated by anti-Virbhadra faction, which would try to display its political strength vis-a-vis Singh’s rallies.

On Tuesday April 10, it is expected to expose the shallow claims of some MLAs of unity among senior leaders like Virbhadra Singh, Anand Sharma, Kaul Singh Thakur and Vidya Stokes. Recently, party's 5 young MLAs had claimed to bring all senior leaders on a single platform after holding one-to-one meetings with them. Interestingly, while Kaul Singh would be present with Sharma on August 10, Stokes is likely to adopt a neutral stance. Sources said both sides have asked their staunch supporters to ensure maximum presence.

On the other hand Virbhadra, who has constantly attacked the state leadership for failure to play the role of an effective opposition, has invited all MLAs, ex-MLAs and other party leaders to his residence on 10 April . he  would discuss election strategy with his supporters, sources added. There shall be another show of strength when Vir Bhadra Singh will also address a rally at Palampur on April 14, which is being coordinated by his close confidant and Baijnath MLA Sudhir Sharma. As the rally has been planned after Sharma and Kaul Singh's visit, it would be a show of strength by Virbhadra loyalist at Palampur, which has gained importance with many leaders eyeing to contest from here after delimitation of assembly constituencies. Palampur is also the residence of BJP national Vice President Shanta Kumar, and the rallies in this town are itself important. Virbhadra's supporters have also decided to hold a massive rally in Shimla on May 5 to honour him for his contribution to the party in the last 50 years

This internal fight is,  as there were many aspirants for the chief minister's post. While Virbhadra had made it clear in his recent statements of playing an important role in the state again, state party chief  Kaul Singh, too, had staked claim for top political post in the state. Two other  leaders from Kangra and Shimla are also in the fray.