Congress Bid to Pacify Virb­hadra, Gives Him Say in Poll Picks

The Day After - - STATES DIARY -

Congress has as­sured Hi­machal Pradesh CM Virb­hadra Singh that he would have a de­ci­sive say in ticket dis­tri­bu­tion in the state elec­tions in a bid to per­suade him to re­lent on his de­mand for re­moval of bete noire Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu as state party chief. The as­sur­ance ap­pears to be more of a face-saver as Singh has de­clared that he would not con­test the up­com­ing elec­tions if Sukhu is not re­moved de­spite the lead­er­ship hav­ing taken a stand that his de­mand would not be ac­cepted.

Sources said the lead­er­ship has con­veyed to Singh that change of guard in the state unit so close to elec­tions would trig­ger con­fu­sion among party work­ers. They ar­gued that key is­sue in polls would be se­lec­tion of can­di­dates and Virb­hadra would have a prin­ci­pal say in that. By in­sider ac­counts, Virb­hadra Singh has de­manded that 60 of the 70 can­di­dates should be his nom­i­nees.

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