The auspicious occasion of Paush Purnima on Monday prompted several candidates from various political parties to file their nominations for the assembly polls despite heavy snowfall in some areas. Paush Purnima happens to be a major bathing day.
Chief minister major general BC Khanduri braved heavy snowfall and walked around 4 km to file nomination in Pauri for the Kotdwar seat even as BJP state president Bishen Singh Chuphal filed nomination for the Didihat seat in Pithoragarh.
Minister for culture Vijaya Barthwal also traversed through heavy snowfall to file her nomination in Pauri for Yamkeshwar seat. Senior UKD (P) leader Kashi Singh Aeri filed his nomination for Dharchula seat.
The others who filed nomination included: BJP's Chandan Ram Dass (Bagshwar), Congress' Tilak Raj Behad (Rudrapur) and BJP's Asha Nautiyal (Kedarnath). In Doon, candidates' supporters turned up in large numbers despite the chill due to heavy rain in the wee hours of Monday.
Several candidates said part of their choice for filing nomination on Monday was influenced by astrological charts.
Speaker Harbans Kapoor, minister for disaster management Trivendra Singh Rawat and Congress MLA Dinesh Aggarwal went to file nominations in huge processions of supporters.
There was a little ruckus at the Collectorate when some BSP supporters who were waving party flags, were chased by police as flags are banned on the Collectorate premises.
There was tight security at the Collectorate to meet any eventuality.
Many candidates brought with them traditional percussionists of the hill areas who played the dhol and damau as supporters danced to their tunes.
Bahadur Singh Rawat of UKD (P) who would be contesting from Dharampur reached the Collectorate late and could not file nomination on Monday. BJP candidates who filed nominations included speak Harban Kapoors (Cantt), Trivendra Singh Rawat (Raipur) Ravinder Katariya (Rajpur). Congress MLA Dinesh Aggarwal filed nomination from Dharampur. BSP candidates who field nominations included Manoj Sharma (Mussoorie), Tanveer Singh (Rajpur), Phool Singh Lodhi (Doiwala), Ajay Sood (Raipur) and Haji Saleem Ahmad (Dharampur). Independent MM Lakhera filed nomination from Raipur.
BSP candidate Manoj Sharma's wish of coming on a chopper to file nomination was not fulfilled as he was denied permission by district administration.
22 papers filed in Haridwar
The sound of drums, an expectant atmosphere and a constant buzz—the collectorate was transformed from a drab bureaucratic office to the city’s hotspot on Monday.
As expected, several heavyweight candidates filed their nomination papers as the day had been proclaimed auspicious by fortune tellers.
A total of 22 nominations were filed, including BJP’s Madan Kaushik, who is contesting from Haridwar and first time candidate Kalim Ansari from Mangalore. Swami Yateeshwaranand and Suresh Jain will contest from Haridwar Rural and Sanjay Gupta from Luxor.
BSP candidates who filed papers today were Hazi Tasleem from Luxor, Dr Nayyar Kazmi from Roorkee, Mohammad Shazad from Peeran Kaliyar, K Kareem Ansari from Manglore, Shesh Raj Saini from Haridwar Rural and Choudhari Kulbeer Singh from Khanpur.
From the Congress, Balwant Singh Chauhan will contest from Ranipur and Satpal Brahmchari from Haridwar. Rajendra Rathor of SP and independent candidates Brij Rani and Manohar Sharma from Jwalapur, also filed their papers.