Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party, which has decided to contest all four parliamentary seats in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, is still undecided about its candidate from the Shimla seat, for which it has received a large number of applications. It is likely that the candidate may be announced after two days.
The party has already announced candidates from Mandi, Kangra and Hamirpur.
In Kangra, AAP is fielding Rajan Sushant, former Bharatiya Janata Party sitting MLA, who joined the party recently. In Hamirpur and Mandi, Kargil martyr Captain Vikram Batra’s mother Kamal Kant Batra and Jai Chand Thakur, a former deputy director of the agriculture department.
AAP’s Himachal Pradesh observer Sandeep Bisht attributed the delay in announcement of the final name to the “huge” volume of applications received.
He disclosed that the party received 480 applications for the state’s four seats. For the Shimla seat, the party has received nearly 130 applications, including some from those people who were not aware that it was a reserved seat, he added.
Bisht said, “Some of the people who had applied were found to be ‘tainted’ by AAP volunteers, who provided valid information in this regard. We have found 65 to 70 genuine people. As we are still in the process of finalising the name, it is likely to materialise within a day or two.”
AAP state convener Deshraj Sharma said while the name was yet to be finalised, the party had already chalked out the plan of action at the block and booth levels.
Subhash Chander, who retired from government services as an executive engineer of the public works division from Fatehpur district in Kangra in July last year, has emerged as the likely contender for the Shimla seat.
During his 16-year service in HPPWD, Chander served in various places in Shimla district, including Kupvi, Jubbal, Kotkhai Chopal and Theog. He had also served in the Shimla municipal corporation for nearly 20 years as junior and assistant engineer.