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HP Polls 2017: BJP to form Govt, but Virbhadra still popular choice for CM seat, says opinion poll

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HP Assembly Polls opinion poll

Shimla: As the round of nomination filing is over, the round of opinion polls have been kicked off by the media. A huge chunk of it is believed to be paid as the election season the most beneficial for it. However, it is upto the readers to decide whether they agree or disagree with it. 

To spice things up, India Today –Maxim India claims to have conducted an opinion poll. It has predicted that the Bhartiya Janata Party will reign in the upcoming elections to the Himachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly.

As per the opinion poll, BJP is all set to register a victory on as many as 47 seats while Congress would shrink to somewhere between 20-25.

It said the BJP would form the government in Himachal by obtaining about 49 percent of the vote share. The opinion poll also claimed that BJP would lead in three major districts namely, Kangra, Mandi, and Shimla.

However, Virbhadra Singh was still the most popular choice for the seat of Chief Minister with 31 percent votes followed by the Union Health Minister JP Nadda on the second position with 24 percent votes.

Other leaders including former Chief-Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal and Shanta Kumar had reached the bottom of the list.

About 28 percent of the surveyed people believed Virbhadra did work for development. Further, the major issue for the election was reported to be unemployment.

It is pertinent to mention that the BJP has been claiming a victory with 50 plus seats.

However, Congress believes otherwise. The party has maintained that the public will react to inconvenience due to demonetization and Goods Services Tax.

The counter-campaign of Congress in Himachal is likely to follow the Indian National Congress President Rahul Gandhi, who is targeting the Modi government over the GST issue. Yesterday, while addressing a people at an event, Rahul called it a Gabbar(G) Singh (S) Tax (T)

On the other side, BJP will target the face of the Congress in Himachal – Virbhadra Singh.  Therefore, BJP will highlight Virbhadra’s  ongoing corruption cases.  

Moreover, the drama that took place before the filing of nomination for the Theog Assembly and rejection of senior-most leader Vidya Stokes’ nomination could cost Congress a lot.

Misc News/Press Release

Holding Clean Elections India’s Biggest Challenge as Misuse of Money Increases By Leaps And Bounds: EC

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Multi-Departmental Committee on Election Intelligence

New Delhi: Conducting clean elections is now one of the biggest challenges in our democracy given the prevalent abuse of money power, particularly when it manifests in the inducement of voters, the Elections Commission of India said today.

Unfortunately, the use of the money during the elections has increased by leaps and bounds in recent times. Mischief mongers are ever devising more ingenious ways to beat the system, said the EC Larger seizures have been made by our enforcement teams in successive elections.

To address this paramount problem, the Election Commission of India headed by Chief Election Commissioner  Sunil Arora along with Election Commissioners Ashok Lavasa and Sushil Chandra today held a meeting of Multi-Departmental Committee on Election Intelligence.  Heads of Tax Boards, Law enforcement agencies, Central Paramilitary Forces and representatives of Financial Institutions attended the meeting.

The Chief Election Commissioner, Sunil Arora along with the Election Commissioners, Ashok Lavasa and Sushil Chandra at Meeting of Multi-Departmental Committee on Election Intelligence, in New Delhi on March 15, 2019.

He said Commission is determined to curb this menace and has issued detailed guidelines to monitor election expenditure incurred by candidates and political parties.  He said individually and collectively the agencies participating in the meeting are the bulwarks of clean elections. The outcome of synergised action should exceed the commitments made. 

To ensure clean elections, it is vital keeping track of the legal expenditure incurred by candidates and political parties for election campaigns. More importantly, it is imperative to ensure that there is no illegal use of money and other items for buying of votes, said Election Commissioner Chandra.

Issues Discussed at Committee on Election Intelligence

  • Ways of Curbing of covert expenditure by candidates and political parties
  • Sensitisation of the law enforcement agencies about their role during elections
  • Co-operation and sharing of intelligence of economic offences amongst law enforcement agencies for effective action
  • Preparation of road map for action during the elections
  • Mapping of constituencies by concerned agencies to check transportation of smuggled goods, drugs, liquor, and cash, including fake currency, through seaports, inter-state borders and international borders and pro-active and preventive action by each law enforcement agency

The Heads of Tax Boards, Law enforcement agencies, Central Paramilitary Forces and representatives of Financial Institutions assured the Commission of prompt 24X7 expenditure monitoring and surveillance action.

The Commissions said a greater synergy amongst various enforcement agencies is needed to develop a collective strategy to fight this menace.  Therefore, the Commission expects that all enforcement agencies should have proper sharing of information for taking coordinated action rather than working in silos.

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Misc News/Press Release

Congress Urges EC to Restrain BJP from Hoisting Party Flags on Houses of Govt Scheme Beneficiaries in Himachal

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BJP's Mera Parivar - Bhajpa Parivar Campaign in Himachal Pradesh

Shimla- The President of the Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee, Kuldeep Singh Rathore, have requested the Chief Election Commissioner to restrain Bhartiya Janata Party’s “Mera Parivar-Bhajpa Parivar” political campaign ahead of the upcoming elections to the Lok Sabha.

He has alleged misuse of the Government machinery for the promotion of BJP’s party campaign. The issue was highlighted by Rathore in a letter to the EC on February 22.

 BJP had launched its campaign on February 12, 2019. Under this campaign, BJP flags were hoisted at houses of various party workers.

However, Rathore raised questions over the campaign. In the letter to the EC, India, Rathor said BJP was also hoisting flags on the houses of the beneficiaries under Centre Government sponsored schemes, which he termed as “unconstitutional, coercive, and breach of privacy of individuals”.


The benefits are given by the Government and not by any political party,

Rathore said in the letter.

He said it would send a wrong message to the people, leading to unrest in society.  He alleged that this action of BJP is only intended to achieve political goals ahead of the elections.

The Chief Minister Jairam Thakur had also hoisted flags on the prominent party workers in Shimla on the launch of the campaign.

The state government had even issued an official press statement with a photograph of the Chief Minister hoisting the party flag in Chotta Shimla. The State Government is not supposed to provide a platform for the party’s political campaign.

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4459.24 crore to be Spent on 7 NH Projects in HP: Union Minister Gadkari

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Panna Pramukh Samelan in Kangra Himachal Pradesh

Kangra- On Sunday, ahead of elections to the Lok Sabha, Union Minister of Shipping, Road, Transport and Highways, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Nitin Gadkari, laid foundation stones of seven National Highway Projects for State worth Rs. 4459.24 crore at Gaggal in Kangra district .

He also addressed the Panna Pramukh Sammelan of Kangra Parliamentary Constituency held at Chambi in Shahpur on Sunday, which thousands of party workers of Kangra Parliamentary area attended.


Panna Pramukh Sammelan , Kangra

The amount announced for each of National Highway Projects in Himachal Pradesh is as follows:

  • Rs. 1572.90 crore for the four-laning work of 37.05 kms Punjab-Himachal Border to Sihuni section of National Highway No. 154
  • Rs. 1356 crore for 104.60 kms section of Paonta Sahib-Gumma-Feduzpul section of National Highway No.
  • Rs.1334 crore for 109.75 kms section Hamirpur-Mandi of National Highway No.70
  • Rs. 51.09 crore for 15.75 kms Una-Bhiroo section of National Highways No. 503A to be constructed
  • Rs. 46.13 crore for 23.10 kms section of Matour-Dharamshala-Mcleodganj National Highway No.503
  • Rs. 30 crore for 7kms Paonta Sahib Town section of National Highway No. 7 
  • Rs. 40.05 crore for 49 kms Baroh Chowk-Dehrian-Jandrah-Talli-Lagru-Dola Khudian-Nahlian road

Rs. 29.07 crore were announced for the construction of retaining walls and crash barriers between 94 kms section of Sainj-Luhri-Anni-Jalori-Banjar-Aut National Highway No. 305

Further, while adressing the public meeting, he claimed that the National Highway Authority of India was executing four laning and other National Highway projects worth Rs 25,000 crore and about 16000 Irrigation Projects were being executed by the Union Government.

He said that developmental projects worth Rs 10500 crore have been sanctioned by the Union Government for the State.

He also claimed that the State had only 1706 km National Highway but due to the centre Government today the State has over 7000 km National Highways. The State had only 15 National Highways in the State, but today the State has 70 National Highways, he said.  

He took a jibe at the previous Congress Government, and said it even failed to prepare DPR of National Highways sanctioned for the State.

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