Poll predictions and weather conditions in Himachal Pradesh have equally turned unpredictable this time. The lashing cold wind and moderate rain experiencing in the tiny northern poll-bound state have however, failed to soak the spirit of the approaching LokSabha elections of 2019.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi kicked off the election campaign with a rally organized in the Kangara district on Thursday. A visibly confident Gandhi accused the Modi-regime of spreading hate and adopting anti-farmer policies.
The Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee (HPCC) had been on a shaky terrain after a section of party leaders expressed dissent after some conflicts within the party. This had seriously damaged the prospects of Congress during the recently held assembly election. Rahul Gandhi himself came out and said that the rift led to the defeat and poor performance of congress in the recently held assembly polls. While the rift casts shadow over Congress, HPCC President Kuldeep Rathore clarified that the party stands united this time to take on BJP in the coming elections.
Former minister and senior congress leader GS Bali said that the manifesto of Congress would be a visionary one with sufficient priority given to education, health, tourism and transport sectors. He also announced that unemployment among youth would be the agenda of congress in the polls.
On the other hand, BJP has launched a series of schemes just before the elections.
Chief minister Jai-Ram Thakur on Tuesday March 5th launched Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-Dhan Yojna. Under this scheme, workers in the unorganized sector would be provided with a monthly pension of Rs. 3000. The newly introduced scheme is expected to benefit carpenters, rikshaw pullers, people working in leather, beedi, handicrafts, and handloom sectors that contribute a good chunk of voters.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while addressing a recently held ‘jan abhaar’ rally held to celebrate one year of the Jai Ram Thakur led BJP government, said that projects worth Rs 26,000 crore were underway in different sectors in Himachal Pradesh.