Security personnel standing outside the gate of Himachal Pradesh Vidhan Sabha in Shimla on Wednesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Security personnel standing outside the gate of Himachal Pradesh Vidhan Sabha in Shimla on Wednesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)

Cong gears up to corner Jai Ram govt in HP budget session

The Vidhan Sabha is reassembling after seven months as the winter session, which was slated for December 7, was called off due to the surge in Covid cases.
PUBLISHED ON FEB 25, 2021 12:20 AM IST

The Himachal assembly’s budget session, which will begin from February 26, is expected to be a stormy affair with the opposition Congress all set to take on the Jai Ram Thakur-led Bharatiya Janata Party government on a slew of issues, including its Covid management.

The Vidhan Sabha is reassembling after seven months as the winter session, which was slated for December 7, was called off due to the surge in Covid cases.

The decision to call off the winter session had not gone down well with the Congress, which had accused the state government of running away from the issues facing the common man amid the pandemic. The grand old party has also been accusing the Jai Ram government of mishandling the Covid situation in the state, post the imposition of the countrywide lockdown.

“The state’s financial health is in doldrums. Its debt burden has crossed over 61, 0000 crore, and the current government has borrowed 12,000 crore from the Reserve Bank over the last three years to pay the salaries of its employees and carry out development works. But it is still harping on the support from the Union government,” said leader of opposition Mukesh Agnihotri.

The Congress is also likely to raise the issue of farm bills passed by the Centre. “The farmers’ issue is not just confined to the Centre; it is also a state subject as it affects the rural economy and Himachal largely runs on agriculture and horticulture. So, we will raise the issue in the Vidhan Sabha,” said senior Congress leader and five-time legislator from Shillai, Harshwardhan Chauhan.

BJP to counter Cong attack with its recent victory in panchayat polls

The saffron party is likely to cite the outcome of the recently concluded panchayat polls to counter the Congress attack. The BJP had claimed landslide victories in elections to block samitis, panchayats and zila parishads. BJP had formed zila parshads in all districts barring Kullu and Shimla, where Congress wrested the top slots of Zila parishad chairperson and vice-chairman’s posts.

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