Vikramaditya Singh, Anand Sharma file nominations for Mandi, Kangra Lok Sabha seats

Congress leaders Vikramaditya Singh and Anand Sharma filed their nominations from the Mandi and Kangra Lok Sabha seats, respectively. Singh criticized BJP candidate Kangana Ranaut, while Sharma rejected the "outsider" tag. Singh promised development projects and pledged to take up GST, revenue deficit grant, and old pension scheme issues. Sharma focused on promoting eco-tourism, expanding railways, and setting up central institutions in Kangra and Chamba districts. Both leaders held rallies and highlighted the Congress government's welfare work and contrasted it with the BJP's alleged corruption.

PTI | Shimla | Updated: 09-05-2024 16:39 IST | Created: 09-05-2024 16:39 IST
Vikramaditya Singh, Anand Sharma file nominations for Mandi, Kangra Lok Sabha seats
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Congress leaders Vikramaditya Singh and Anand Sharma on Thursday filed their nomination papers from the Mandi and Kangra Lok Sabha seats, respectively.

While Singh attacked BJP candidate Kangana Ranaut in an oblique reference, Sharma shunned the ''outsider'' tag, and said they had never questioned why Prime Minister Narendra Modi, hailing from Gujarat, contested elections from Varanasi.

''We are doing politics of development, she is doing politics of entertainment,'' said Singh, adding that this ''picture'' directed by Leader of Opposition Jai Ram Thakur would fail at the ''box office'' on June 1.

Singh, who was accompanied by his mother and state Congress chief Pratibha Singh, Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu and Congress Working Committee (CWC) member and Himachal in-charge Rajiv Shukla, said, ''Kangana is abusing Congress leaders from the stage but in the past 20-25 days, she had not even once spelt out her vision for the constituency.

''Kangana had started her campaign 20-25 days back and from morning to evening, she used abusive words for us but has not uttered a single word on her vision for this parliamentary constituency'', he said, adding that she should tell people what she wanted to do.

Mandi would be made a smart city and Jalori Jot tunnel would be constructed on the line of the Rohtang tunnel. The remote Pangi area of Chamba would also be connected through the tunnel, Singh told PTI.

''I would take forward the long and deep relation with the people of Mandi'', the Congress candidate, who is the son of late chief minister Virbhadra Singh, said.

Scion of erstwhile Rampur estate, Singh is pitted against actor and BJP candidate Kangana Ranaut.

Elaborating on the achievements of the Congress, Singh said the party has opened IIT at Mandi, a medical college at Nerchowk and been instrumental in construction of the Kirathpur-Nerchowk four lane.

''We stood with the people of Mandi during the worst monsoon disaster last year and will continue to be with them, and I have got Rs 3,500 crore for the state from the Centre,'' he added.

Besides the development agenda, long pending matters related to Good and Service tax, revenue deficit grant and old pension scheme would also be taken up with the Union government after the party wins, he assured the people of Mandi.

''Change of winds are visible in the country and after the first three phases of Lok Sabha polls, the BJP has been washed out in the South and halved in the North'', he claimed.

The Congress government in the state would continue with its development and welfare agenda for the next three-and-a-half years, he said while exuding confidence that his party would also win all the six assembly seats in the bypolls.

Interacting with the media, Sukhu claimed that he has extensively toured the constituency and people are praising the policies of the Congress government and the efforts made during the monsoon disaster, and they are against the BJP for allegedly not standing with the state during the disaster.

''Vikramaditya Singh would win by a margin of over two lakh,'' said Sukhu.

After filing the nomination, Anand Sharma rejected the ''outsider'' tag given to him by the BJP and said that he is a Himachali, born in Shimla. ''We have never questioned that PM Narendra Modi is from Gujarat and contesting from Varanasi, we do not have such a small mindset,'' he said.

Sharma, a four-time Rajya Sabha member and former Union minister who would take on BJP candidate Rajeev Bhardwaj, was accompanied by Speaker Kukdeep Singh Pathania and Cabinet Minister Chander Kumar.

''This is not a new place for me and we are going to the people and trying to convey our message to every voter. Our focus would be on promoting eco-tourism and adventure sports in Kangra and Chamba districts falling under the Kangra Lok Sabha seat,'' Sharma said while talking to mediapersons.

Expansion of railways and setting up central institutions and a trade park in Chamba would also be the priorities, and at present 11 out of 16 MLAs in the Kangra parliamentary seat are from the Congress, while one seat of Dharamshala is going for bypolls along with the Lok Sabha elections, he added.

''This is an election between honesty and corruption and the issue of horse-trading by the BJP would be kept before the people, besides public welfare work undertaken by the state government like restoration of the Old Pension Scheme and Rs 1,500 monthly to women,'' said CM Sukhu.

Both the leaders held a rally after filing their nominations, and CM Sukhu was present in both the rallies.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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