Dainik Nation Bureau
Congress, which had won all the three seats i.e. Karnprayag, Tharali (SC) and Badrinath of Chamoli district during assembly election-2012, may repeat its sweep in this election because several BJP leaders are ready to contest as an independent against the party’s official candidates if they are denied ticket by party high command. It has learnt that at least three such rebels are likely to file nominations in each of the three seats up for grabs in the district. In case this happens they are likely to spite the chances of the party’s official candidates by eating substantially into their votes, observers say.
As far as lone reserve seat Tharali constituency is concern then there are at least three BJP leaders i.e. Magan Lal, Ex MLA Govind Lal Shah and Balbeer Ghuniyal are eying for the seat. Interestingly Magan Lal was defeated by 400 vote by Congress candidate Prof Jeet Ram during assembly election-2012. However, this time, prospects of Balbeer Ghuniyal contesting the seat as the official BJP candidate seem brighter. If it happens the other two would contest as independents and BJP would have to bear its heat.
On the other hand, sitting MLA Prof Jeetram is all set to get the nomination this time too. Seemingly confident MLA Jeetram said that he had not left any stone unturned to fulfill the promises which he had made during last assembly election. “I worked hard in the fields of roads, peyjal, education, child development, health and many others in the constituency. To ensure better development, I had nine gram panchayats of Tharali block included in Narayanbagar block. Moreover, a registry office has come up in Tharali,” he added.
In Badrinath constituency, things are depressing for BJP with three leaders- ex-MLA Mahandra Bhatt, Ram Kishan Singh Rawat and Ritudaman Singh Rawat are lobbying hard to get ticket from here. On the other hand congress sitting MLA and cabinet minister Rajendra Singh Bhandari seems confident about the ticket so he has started canvassing for election. Although Bhandari was brought into politics by BJP senior leader Satpal Maharaj but Maharaj refused to contest election against him because of Bhandari commands in his constituency. Bhandari was elected as an independent during the Assembly election-2007. Later, he joined the Congress at the behest of his mentor Satpal Maharaj before the Assembly election-2012. He won the election-2012 on a Congress ticket.
During interacting his supporters named many achievements like engineering, pharmacy, polytechnique and nursing colleges during this tenure between 2012-2017. Besides, he took initiatives to include Joshimath area in OBC category and to upgrade around dozen high schools.
As far as Karnprayag seat is concerned at least three BJP local leaders are laying claim to it- Surendra Singh Negi, Ex MLA Anil Nautiyal and Tika Ram Maikhuri. Congress is about to declare their sitting MLA and Deputy Speaker Dr Anusuya Prasad Maikhuri from karnprayag. Harish Pujari, the candidate from BJP, who lost the election 2012 by a little over 200 votes, is not among the ticket seekers.
Dr Maikhuri is known as a strong champion for Gairsain being made the permanent capital of Uttarakhand. Notably, Maikhuri’s career began from Gram Pradhan of Maikhura village. Then he become block Pramukh of karnprayag and MLA from Badrinath. He was also appointed as vice chairman of Char Dham Vikas Parishad and chairman of Badrinath Kedarnath Mandir Samiti from 2002 to 2007.