Dehradun: While the Congress party grapples to find a candidate for the Tehri Lok Sabha constituency, BJP candidate and sitting MP Mala Rajlaxmi Shah has taken a lead in reaching out to the people.
The BJP’s official candidates have long started their campaigns, while the Congress is yet to decided on its candidates in three constituencies. Here, the cultural wing of the BJP stages a street play, in Dehradun on Saturday. (Vinay Santosh Kumar/ht photo)
Shah has already completed the public contact programmes via road shows in almost the entire constituency. Confident of her nomination, Shah had started her public contact programmes almost a month in advance.
“We are least concerned as to what is happening in the Congress party. Our only goal is to win. I have covered almost the whole constituency once and now second part of the campaign is going on,” said Shah, who was campaigning in Uttarkashi on Saturday.
She said people were angry with the ruling Congress government as the state government “badly” failed in relief and rehabilitation works for the disaster victims and developmental work against tall claims.
Shah’s supporters expect a “much higher” victory margin than in 2012 for their leader. “We are telling the people how ruling party made tall claims of development in their areas. Voters here were easily misled in 2012 as the Congress candidate was the son of the then CM, but now they have realised that promises were hollow,” said Rajpal Negi, a close aide of Shah.
Negi claimed that Shah would win by almost 80,000 votes in this election. He said they were telling the voters that Shah spent 99% of the MP Local Area Development (MPLAD) fund on the development of the constituency.
On the other hand, Congress party is still grappling over who should be its Tehri Lok Sabha candidate. While former chief minister Vijay Bahuguna has denied to contest, he wants his son Saket Bahuguna to be nominated from Tehri seat. Bahuguna wants to keep the seat within the family as a safe constituency for future. However, central leadership of the Congress does not seem convinced with his idea.
It may be mentioned here that in Uttarakhand BJP, there was least controversy in the ticket distribution. In fact, there was no voice of dissent in the Tehri Lok Sabha, except former MLA Munna Singh Chauhan, whose name was discussed in the party’s central parliamentary board, but the party leaders decided in favour of the sitting MP.