With its prestige at stake, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has stepped up its campaign for Dharamshala and Pachhad assembly bypolls.
The two seats had fell vacant after local legislators Kishan Kapoor and Suresh Kashyap were elected to Lok Sabha.
Chief minister (CM) Jai Ram Thakur, who is busy with national president Jagat Parkash Nadda’s three-day tour in the state, will finally hit the campaign trail within next two days.
“The CM will address eight rallies each in the two assembly segments,” said a BJP leader.
Jai Ram will visit Pachhad on October 11 and 12 and then again on October 17 and 18 to spruce up the party’s campaign.
Lok Sabha member Suresh Kashyap, who has been legislator from Pachhad twice, has already undertaken door-to-door campaigning and seeking votes on the works done during his tenure.
Besides, the government has deputed irrigation and public health minister Mahender Singh Thakur, who is popular for the political management skills.
The CM had already announced the IPH divisions for Rajgarh and Sarahan in Pachhad ahead of polls.
Education minister Suresh Bhardwaj, social justice minister Rajiv Sezal and party’s chief whip Narendra Bragta are vigorously campaigning for the party.
BJP leaders are enlisting achievements of the CM regime, while works done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government, particularly in its second tenure, is party’s main poll plank in Pachhad.
Party leaders are harping on abrogation of Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir and works done during the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government.
The BJP has fielded green horn Reena Kashyap, who hails from backward Transgiri region of Pachhad, while Congress is banking on its old guard former speaker Gangu Ram Musafir, who has record of the seven straight wins.
Soft spoken Musafir, who lost two elections to Suresh Kashyap, is banking upon his rapport with population.
Independent candidate Dayal Pyari Kashyap, who was ousted from BJP for refusal to withdraw from poll field for six years enjoys a good rapport among public.
Kashyap, who was among front runners in the BJP along with youth leader Ashish Sikta for the ticket, is seeking justice from electorate over denial of her claims.
Kashyap has been accusing the BJP leadership of meting injustice with her.
“Had I withdrawn from the field, it would have not been a wise decision,” she said, adding, “It is people’s power that pushed me in the elections fray.”
Alleging that government was mounting pressure on the electorate and her supporters in the area, which has been a strong belt, she said, “We welcome leaders from different parties to campaign for their candidate, but it is not good that my supporters are being threatened. Voters in Pachhad will give a befitting reply to such acts.”
Till now the congresses and the BJP have preferred holding a small meeting and are campaigning door-to-door to improve their poll prospect .
The CM is likely to address big poll meeting in Dharamshala and Pachhad.
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