Yashpal Arya, Madan Kaushik, Satpal Maharaj, Harak Singh Rawat and Rekha Arya in race for LS tickets
With the crucial Lok Sabha elections tentatively slated in April- May this year, drawing closer, the list of contenders in the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the five parliamentary seats of the state is becoming long with each passing day. One of the interesting facts however is that more than half of the ministers in the Trivendra Singh Rawat cabinet of the state are prepared to take electoral plunge in these elections.
Recently, the transport Minister Yashpal Arya openly staked his claim for the Nainital- Udham Singh Nagar parliamentary seat and boasted that he is well placed to win from there. Arya’s claim assumes significance as party stalwart and former chief minister Bhagat Singh Koshyari is sitting MP from Nainital seat. Though Koshyari has stated that he is not interested to contest again and would like to devote time in social works, it is generally believed that despite being on wrong side of age- he is 76- BJP would like to see the old fox in electoral battle for one more time. Like Arya, other ministers of TSR cabinet have not openly stated their intention to contest Lok Sabha elections but it is an open secret that heavy weight cabinet minister Madan Kaushik is keen to enter Lok Sabha from Haridwar. His antagonism to the sitting Haridwar MP Ramesh Pokhariyal ‘ Nishank’ is known to everyone and camp followers of Kaushik are openly rooting to replace Nishank from Haridwar.
Another senior cabinet minister of TSR’s cabinet who has failed to hide his intention to contest from Pauri Lok Sabha seat is Harak Singh Rawat. Given his advanced age and considering that he has made his intentions public not to enter electoral politics on many occasions, It is certain that sitting MP from Pauri and former CM Maj General B C Khanduri ( Rtd) would be replaced by BJP this time.
Name of another heavyweight of Trivendra cabinet Satpal Maharaj is making round as party’s candidate from Pauri parliamentary constituency. Minister of state for women and child welfare, Rekha Arya is also bracing her chances from Almora- Pithoragarh (reserved) constituency. In coming days it would be interesting to watch political manoeuvring done by these heavyweights of TSR’s cabinet.
Sunday, 06 January 2019 | PNS | Dehradun—
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