Shah approves poll panel for Uttarakhand LS seats, BJP ticket aspirants are members
Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah’s nod to an election management committee for the five Lok Sabha seats in Uttarakhand has left ticket aspirants, who have been included in the panel, guessing about their fate.dehradun Updated: Jun 25, 2018 21:50 IST
Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah’s nod to an election management committee for the five Lok Sabha seats in Uttarakhand has left ticket aspirants, who have been included in the panel, guessing about their fate.
The 15-member committee will oversee poll preparations in the Lok Sabha constituencies ahead of the general elections due in less than a year’s time.
The committee includes chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, general secretary (organisation) Sanjay Kumar, state party president Ajay Bhatt, and ministers Yashpal Arya, Madan Kaushik and Dhan Singh Rawat. Senior ministers Satpal Maharaj and Prakash Pant have been kept out.
Two former chief ministers – Vijay Bahuguna and Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank – and union minister of state Ajay Tamta have also been included in the panel. Tamta is a member of parliament from Almora and Nishank from Haridwar.
“It is perceived that those who are involved in election management, a full-time job, stay away from contesting polls,” said a senior BJP leader and former minister.
Other leaders expressed the same opinion, fuelling speculations on whether the committee members, including two MPs, would lose the chance of getting tickets to contest LS polls.
Party general secretary Naresh Bansal differed. “It is not a thumb rule that someone who is in the election committee cannot contest an election,” said Bansal, who was a ticket seeker from Haridwar in the last parliamentary elections. “Leaders get place in the committee by virtue of their seniority. Giving a ticket is entirely a party’s decision taken at an appropriate time.”
A buzz doing the rounds in the party is that Bhatt, Pant and former MP Balraj Pasi are probable candidates for the Nainital parliamentary constituency.
Pant’s movements in the Nainital constituency in the past few months indicate his interest to contest from there. He had contested unsuccessfully the Sitarganj assembly by-election against Vijay Bahuguna in 2012. Bahuguna was then the Congress chief minister. Sitarganj falls in the Nainital parliamentary constituency.
“No, no, I am not willing to contest (general) election,” said Pant when HT asked him on Monday.
The Nainital seat is presently represented by Bhagat Singh Koshyari, who has completed 75 years – an unwritten rule in the BJP that debars the elderly from contesting polls.
First Published: Jun 25, 2018 21:50 IST