Supporters of chief minister Harish Rawat and state Congress president Kishor Upadhyay have been beelining to New Delhi to lobby for their respective leaders with the party central leadership as spat between the state government and the PCC intensified.
Both the warring camps, however, claimed the leaders went to the national capital to participate in the culmination of Rahul Gandhi’s Kisan Yatra.
But party sources privy to the actual motive of the leaders who rushed to the national capital, said they would present the case of their leaders before the party’s top brasses.
Sources said after taking part in the yatra, Upadhay would call on the AICC president Sonia Gandhi to present a dossier of the ongoing party activities.
He is expected to raise issues against Rawat before the party president and also clarify his position on party’s future ties with the Progressive Democratic Front (PDF), an ally of the state government.
“State Congress president will clear the misgivings about his stand on PDF as he never opposed their nominations as party candidates. He had only sought their opinion on contesting elections under Congress tickets. This was done with an aim to hammer out an alternative action plan for Congress leaders who are vying for the tickets from the constituencies being represented by PDF members,” said PCC spokesperson Mathura Dutt Joshi.
To counter their rival camp’s move, many Rawat supporters, including senior cabinet ministers, too have lined up appointments with senior central leaders of the party, including AICC in-charge for the state Ambika Soni.
They would reportedly apprise the central leaders about Upadhyay’s alleged opposition to giving party tickets to PDF leaders despite an assurance given by the party in the past.
PDF chairman sand state education minister Mantri Prasad Naithani himself is currently camping in New Delhi ostensibly to meet a few Congress leaders. But he said he was in the national capital for the treatment of his daughter.
Rawat supporters said the PCC chief’s interference in the government functioning should be stopped. “It needs to be sorted out by the central leadership. There are many issues, apart from PDF, that will be brought to the notice of AICC leaders. Chief Minister’s silence must not be taken as his weakness” said a senior party leader and Rawat supporter who was present in Delhi on Thursday.
Meanwhile, there is a strong rumour in the Congress circles that senior party leader and former Rajya Sabha member from the state captain Satish Sharma was in Dehradun on Wednesday to broker peace between Upadhyay and Rawat. But no party leader confirmed the development.