Congress failed to fulfil poll promises: Dhumal

Shimla: Leader of the Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal accuses Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister of failing to fulfil poll promises during a debate on the motion of thanks on the Governor’s address.

Singh and Dhumal both attacked each other on the issue of “discrimination” and fanning regionalism and casteism.

Initiating the debate, Dhumal recalled incidents or arson and violence during apple agitation in 1990, Dhumal quoted from the report of Malhotra Commission and said that people from lower areas of the state were targeted creating a divide in the state and Virbhadra Singh was MLA from Rohroo at that time.

He said that the Chief Minister had been attacking the BJP for fanning regionalism and casteism to divide the people but the fact was that he was himself brazenly indulging in politics of regional discrimination and dividing the people on the caste lines.

Provoked by accusations, reacted sharply and reiterated his allegations that Dhumal and BJP were creating divide between the people of upper Himachal and lower hills.

Dhumal was unrelenting and referred to shifting of several offices from his home district of Hamirpur, blocking development and infrastructure projects including roads and bus stand, apart from relocation of IRB police battalion during past four years.

He claimed more roads were constructed in Rohroo area during his chief ministership as compared to Hamirpur.

The former CM reminded Singh about his remarks against sitting Mandi MP, Ram Swaroop Sharma, a Brahamin leader during a recent rally while a Brahamin leader (Khushi Ram Balnatah) was elected from Rohru during the BJP government.

“Who is promoting the caste-bias in Himachal?” he asked.

Dhumal accused the government of failing to fulfil poll promises, saying out of 317 promises made in the Congress manifesto, 200 have remained completely untouched and yet the government has claimed in the address that all promises have been implemented.

Dhumal said the Chief Minister was right in saying that manifesto was made by the people who had no experience of running the government, and did not even spare the former Union minister Anand Sharma, who headed the manifesto committee and made a tall promised a three-fold hike on import duty on apples while he himself had stated earlier that it cannot be increased above 50 per cent done by Vajpayee regime.