The newly-elected MP from Mandi Lok Sabha seat and wife of former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh Pratibha Singh on Friday said the credit for construction of Atal Tunnel Rohtang goes to the former Congress regime.
Addressing media in Shimla, Singh said the tribals of Lahaul Spiti area had raised the demand for construction of the tunnel with her when she was the MP from Mandi Lok Sabha seat and she had taken up the matter with the then Congress-led UPA government.
“A delegation of locals had met former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and AICC chairperson Sonia Gandhi to construct the tunnel as it will provide all-weather connectivity to the area.
The demand was accepted by the former PM and funds were sanctioned for tunnel’s construction which is the reason that the locals are now availing the benefits of it and now they can reach Lahaul valley within one hour,” she added.
Singh stated that the other demands were for construction of medical college and IIT in Mandi which were also met by the former Congress-led UPA regime.
The people of Mandi parliamentary constituency voted for Congress in the bypolls on the basis of these development works for their welfare and also as a tribute to Virbhadra Singh who made their lives easier by carrying out development projects in rural areas, she said.
“During my election meetings, people of the constituency briefed me about various issues such as construction of Pangi Tunnel, Luhri Jot Tunnel and expansion of airport at Kullu as these will have significant impact on their lives.
I will raise these issues with the Centre government to seek early resolution of the issues of the people of my parliamentary constituency,” she stated.
She further stated that the people in Mandi district were against the construction of the international airport at Balh as it would deprive them of their fertile land.
“I will meet the locals to know more about their concern on the construction of the airport and will take further action as per their best interests,” she added.
She further added that she will raise the issue of the construction of hydropower projects in Kinnaur district as people were against over-exploitation of natural resources.
“I will urge the government to take the locals of the tribal district into confidence before constructing or taking forward proposed hydro projects in the area,” she added.