Jai Ram quells speculations of change in leadership

While ruling out the possibility of any leadership change in Himachal, Jai Ram said the meeting in Delhi primarily focused on preparations for the elections
Himachal chief minister Jai Ram Thakur taking stock of arrangements at the Vidhan Sabha ahead of the President Ram Nath Kovind’s visit, in Shimla on Tuesday. (HT Photo)
Himachal chief minister Jai Ram Thakur taking stock of arrangements at the Vidhan Sabha ahead of the President Ram Nath Kovind’s visit, in Shimla on Tuesday. (HT Photo)
Published on Sep 16, 2021 03:44 AM IST
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By Gaurav Bisht, Shimla

Himachal chief minister Jai Ram Thakur, who returned to Shimla after his two-day visit to Delhi to meet the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) top leaders, spiked the speculation of any leadership change in the state ahead of the byelections.

“It is not what was being speculated,” said Thakur on his return. “My visit to Delhi was pre-scheduled. It was not a sudden plan,” the CM said outside the Himachal secretariat.

While ruling out the possibility of any leadership change in Himachal, he said, “The meeting primarily focused on preparations for the elections, both bypolls as well as general polls. The Delhi tour was a good one. It was scheduled nearly 25 days ago. There I met the party’s national president along with several key leaders from HP such as incharge, co-incharge, state chief and general secretary.”

There were discussions on the core-group meetings in Dharamshala and road map to take forward the policies and programmes of the BJP government was explored, he added.

“This will be implemented in letter and spirit,” the CM said, adding that he also discussed in detail the report card of his cabinet colleagues. It has been reliably learnt that the party high command expressed satisfaction over the performance of the cabinet ministers barring three, who were “underperforming”.

“There was no scope to discuss the cabinet rejig in the meeting that was totally related to organisational affairs,” Thakur said, setting aside probability of cabinet reshuffle as well.

Thakur on Wednesday, meanwhile, presided over a meeting of officers to take stock of President Ram Nath Kovind’s scheduled visit. Kovind will address a special session of the HP Vidhan Sabha on September 17.

All-party meeting held

An all-party meeting was held here on Wednesday to review the arrangements ahead of the Kovind’s visit on Thursday. Presiding over the meeting, CM Thakur said that the HP government had planned to organise year-long celebrations to mark the golden jubilee of the statehood, but due to the pandemic it was not possible to celebrate it on such a large scale.

Thakur also sought all possible cooperation from the leaders of all political parties. Speaker of Vidhan Sabha Vipin Singh Parmar said all former MPs and MLAs have been invited to be a part of this “mega event”. He said at least 73 former MPs and MLAs have accepted the invitation.

Leader of Opposition in HP assembly Mukesh Agnihotri said this event was above party politics and assured full cooperation from the Congress to the state government.

MLA Rakesh Singha said it was an event of the people of the state, who have made immense contributions towards the development of Himachal.

Chief whip Bikram Jaryal, MLAs Asha Kumari and Ram Lal Thakur also gave their suggestions in the meeting.

Chief secretary Ram Subhag Singh, DGP Sanjay Kundu and Vidhan Sabha secretary Yashpal Sharma were among those who attended the meeting.

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Friday, October 22, 2021