Quest for power: HP leaders leave no stone unturned

  • Gaurav Bisht, Hindustan Times, Shimla
  • Updated: May 10, 2014 11:42 IST

With record turnout in the Lok Sabha elections in Hamirpur, Kangra, Mandi and Shimla constituencies on Wednesday, politicians in Himachal Pradesh have put their faith in astrology.

Chief minister Virbhadra Singh, who is an ardent follower of his ancestral deity Bhimakali, wears rings studded with ruby and red coral on his fingers. Rubies, associated with the sun, is said to have a positive effect and mystical properties, including preserving energy and strength.

Ruby is also known as the stone of courage and is considered the stone of love, energy, passion, power and zest for life, while red coral helps enhance self-confidence, administrative capability and political strength.

“I don’t believe in superstitions. I wear the gems only for good health. I put on the rings you see me wearing right now 28 years ago,” Virbhadra told HT. Bharatiya Janata Party’s sitting MP from Shimla Virender Kashyap also wears red coral.

Unlike her husband, Virbhadra’s wife Pratibha Singh, who is hoping for her second consecutive win from Mandi, is very religious.

She wears panna (emerald) on her fingers, as it is said to soothe troubled minds and bring the wearer reason and wisdom. Pratibha also wears pearl, which, astrologers say, is the symbol of peace.

Former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal wears ruby and a ring peppered with nine gems. “This ring, known as the navratana (nine gems) ring, is used for political benefits,” Shimla-based astrologer Prem Pandit told HT.

Dhumal’s elder son Anurag Thakur, who is seeking his third victory from Hamirpur, believes in astrology and wears a pukhraj (yellow sapphire) ring. The stone is said to symbolise wisdom, longevity, happiness, wealth, name, fame, success and honour.

“Yes, I have faith in astrology, so I wear the stones suggested by astrologers,” said Anurag Thakur, who sounded confident of his victory.

Congress’ Kangra candidate Chander Kumar wears the American diamond, which is associated with luxuries, jewellery and wealth, and since ancient times, has symbolised beauty in material and spiritual life.

Unlike his colleagues and rivals, former chief minister and BJP’s Kangra nominee Shanta Kumar does not have much faith in the celestial powers.

“I don’t believe in superstitions or astrology. I believe only in god. I never consulted any astrologer to find out an auspicious moment to start a project.

Every moment is of the almighty. Many of my friends suggest I should wear this gem or that, but the only one I wear was presented to me by my wife. I don’t know which gem it has,” he told HT.

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