Asserting that former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh had led pro-people government and worked for all-round development of Himachal Pradesh, Pratibha Singh, the wife of late CM and Congress candidate from Mandi Lok Sabha seat, on Wednesday said she will seek votes on development works carried out by him.
Singh will file nomination for bypoll to the Mandi Lok Sabha seat which had fallen vacant due to the death of two time MP Ramswaroop Sharma on 8 October.
Addressing media in Shimla, Pratibha Singh said the people of the state were fed up with rising inflation which had made it tough for them to make their ends meet.
“The price-rise is a big concern for all these days and besides, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah had promised crores of jobs to the people during polls. But these promises were not fulfilled and the common man was now feeling cheated and wanted change at Centre and in state too,” she added.
Replying to a query on contesting elections in the home district of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur which could prove a tough ask, she stated that he was given huge responsibility but he had failed to meet the development aspirations of the people.
“If we compare the development works carried out by previous Congress governments led by Virbhadra Singh, Thakur failed to fulfill development aspirations of the people of the state and he couldn’t even carry out all-round development of home district Mandi.
Be it roads, schools, colleges or any other field, Thakur has failed to match up to the development works carried out by previous Congress governments,” Pratibha Singh said.
She further stated that fighting elections after the death of Virbhadra Singh was a big challenge for them but they were expecting huge support of the people as they (during condolence meets) had promised to repay for good deeds of the late Congress leader.
She termed the contest with ruling BJP in Mandi Lok Sabha as not a big issue and said the people of state were fed with anti-people policies of the party which was the reason that they want to vote the party out of power in the state as well as Centre.
And at present, Congress party seems to be their only hope as the party had worked for the welfare of common man in the past too.
She seemed confident of getting support of Sukh Ram, the former Union minister and grandfather of Ashray Sharma who was also seeking party ticket from the seat and stated that the senior Congress leader will bless her with support in the bypolls.
“Sukhram had started politics from Congress and he was given various responsibilities including the portfolio of Union minister. He has played an important role in state politics for Congress and we are confident of getting his blessings in by-elections,” she added.
She criticised PM Modi for not meeting the demands of protesting farmers and said farmers were the backbone of society and they had put forward some demands which weren’t fulfilled despite staging protests on roads since the last 10 months.
Pratibha Singh questioned PM Modi as to why he can’t listen to their demands and said Congress party was with them in their struggle and if voted to power, the party will fulfill all their demands.
She also raised the issues of horticulturalists of the state and added that they weren’t getting fair prices for their produce which was a matter of great concern.