With just 48 hours are left for the Congress Party's massive rally here on Christmas, Hamirpur town is getting a face lift to greet the participants.
Political analysts believe that Hamirpur, a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) bastion, has been carefully chosen by the Congress party, which wants to dig in the BJP's den.
In view of the rally, roads are being repaired and hoardings, gates and welcome arches are being put up in various parts of the district to greet the people visiting here for the rally.
The organisers, who were put off by rains on Saturday and Sunday, are buoyed by the reports that there would be sunshine on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the work of pitching tents and 'shamianas' has already been started on the ground of a boys' school.
In the meantime, Hamirpur deputy commissioner Ashish Singhmar, district police chief Veena Bharti and other district and sub-divisional officers keep on visiting the rally venue to take stock of the arrangements and passed necessary instructions to their staff.
Besides the officials, the state Congress leaders and workers have also started preparations for the December 25 rally. Himachal Congress chief Sukhvinder Singh Sukhoo held talks with the party functionaries and directed them to fan out in villages to ensure maximum gathering at the rally, especially from Nadaun area of the district, which he had represented twice in the state assembly.
He reportedly directed them to ensure that the gathering must be on the expected lines and Nadaun should lead the district as for as gathering in the Hamirpur rally was concerned.
Sukhoo, who visited the school ground to scrutinise the preparations, was satisfied with the arrangements; however, he told the party functionaries to be on the job till the rally was over.
Besides, chief parliamentary secretary Inder Dutt Lakhanpal visited various parts of the Badsar assembly constituency, which he represents, and passed necessary directions to the party cadre for the Hamirpur rally. He also formed teams of workers, who would start their visit to Hamirpur early on Wednesday morning in vehicles so that huge gathering from the Badsar constituency could reach Hamirpur.
Insiders in the Congress party told HT on Monday that chief minister Virbhadra Singh was likely to reach Hamirpur on Tuesday evening so that he could be briefed about the arrangements and itinerary.
With top Congress leaders are slated to visit Hamirpur, local leaders have started putting up big hoardings and banners displaying their big photographs all over the town to express their loyalty towards the party leadership.