Amidst a show of strength event, Pratibha Singh formally takes over as HP State Congress chief

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Shimla, May 5
In a show of strength, the Congress Member of Parliament and wife of former Chief Minister late Virbhadra Singh, Pratibha Singh, today formally took over as the party’s new state chief. An event was organised at Ambedkar Chowk Shimla this morning. It was attended by several party top state leaders, including Party-state in charge Rajiv Shukla, Congress Sanjay Dutt and Ravneet Bitu, including CLP leader Mukesh Agnihotri, Party Vidhan Sabha election campaign committee in charge Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, Former HPCC chief Kaul Singh Thakur and member of assembly Ram Lal Thakur etc.
Addressing the public meeting, Rajiv Shukla said that the way the entire leadership assembled under one roof in this meeting shows that the party is firmly united to face the upcoming assembly elections and would come to power.
Addressing the rally, HPCC chief Pratibha Singh said that AICC boss Sonia Gandhi gave respect to a woman of Himachal by elevating her as party Chief. She added that she would commit to continuing the legacy of Virbhadra Singh. “Congress would carry forward the roadmap and developmental programs launched by Virbhadra Singh after coming into power again,” stated the HPCC Chief. She said that the party would expose the Narendra Modi government for failing to provide two crore employment avenues every year. She lashed out at the Central Government for burdening every household with an exorbitant hike in fuel prices. She said that BJP had learnt nothing from the bye-election results. “It is still engaged in hiking the costs by increasing VAT on diesel and petrol.” She said that the Modi government has completely ruined the household budget of all sections of society. She noted that the Central Government is trying to divert attention from the burning issues of people by shifting the focus to emotive issues. The Government would not succeed,” she claimed.
Another Congress leader Ram Lal Thakur said that all the party leaders should pledge to fight together to win the upcoming election. To achieve the same, the party leadership would go to the people’s doorstep to get support in the election. CLP leader said that Jai Ram Thakur Government is on departure lounge, but it was unfortunate that it is leaving a debt burden of about Rs 85,000Cr on the state exchequer. The control of the Jai Ram Government is not only confined to Delhi but is being done from different centres like Jaipur and Nagpur. He said that it is not easy to decide who would be Chief Minister in the party as one has to be, first, elected as an MLA. And once it has a strength of 36 to 38 MLAs, the ball would be in the court of the party high command to decide about the next party leader.
Reiterating Thakur’s claim, senior Congressman Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu said that the BJP government in Himachal is just a puppet and its absolute control is in Delhi. He pointed out that if there is no corruption in Jai Ram Government, why did the BJP remove party president Rajiv Bindal. It never explained the reason for downsizing the party president, who was an earlier cabinet minister.
Former HPCC leader Kuldeep Singh Rathore also attended the rally and said that he is firmly standing with Rani Pratibha Singh. He would accept the AICC decision with great regard. He said that the party would not leave any stone unturned to ensure victory in the upcoming assembly election.

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