Rakesh Kalia resigns as Himachal CPS

In a significant political development, Gagret legislator Rakesh Kalia resigned from post of chief parliamentary secretary in the Himachal Pradesh government.

Kalia, who is also secretary in the All India Congress Committee, sent his resignation to AICC general secretary Ambika Soni, who is the state party affairs in-charge.

In his resignation letter, Kalia maintained the he had tendered his resignation following the Congress tradition of one man, one post. "I have gone strictly by our vice-president Rahul Gandhi's assertion of the one man, one post tradition," he told Hindustan Times.

"I am happier working in the organisation. I would not have been able to do justice with  my organisational responsibility had I continued holding the post of chief parliamentary secretary," he said.

Kalia, who is in the national capital, had forwarded his resignation to Soni, who in turn sent it to chief minister Virbhadra Singh later on Wednesday evening.

Kalia is the co-incharge of party affairs in Madhya Pradesh that goes to the polls later this year. "Since Madhya Pradesh is a big state, I need to devote more time for party affairs there," Kalia said.

He downplayed his differences with Virbhadra Singh. "No, I had no problems working with Virbhadra Singhji. The chief minister had acceded to all requests made by me for developmental works in my constituency," he claimed.

Kalia was appointed chief parliamentary secretary in May along with five others, namely Rohit Thakur, ID Lakhanpal, Nand Lal, Sohan Lal and Jajivan Pal. Kalia had been given charge of the lesser significant ayurveda department.

Earlier, Kalia was perturbed over not being made minister. He is a staunch supporter of irrigation and public health minister Vidya Stokes and had contested the election from Gagret after his constituency was reserved for a Scheduled Caste candidate after delimitation. Kalia is the third time legislator. He was elected to the Vidhan Sabha for the first time in 2003. 

Kalia's resignation is bound to have repercussions in the organisational set-up with half a dozen party office-bearers also holding government posts.



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