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All’s not well: Himachal chief Pratibha Singh praises BJP’s work

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NEW DELHI: The crisis for Congress in Himachal Pradesh seems to be far from over. A day after party’s observers brokered truce between warring factions, state party chief Pratibha Singh on Friday sounded a discordant note praising the BJP and higlighting shortcomings in the

state organisation

. She even backed the

rebel MLAs

who precipitated the crisis and face disqualification from assembly.

“A lot of things remain to be done in Congress. As an MP, I visit my constituency and try to interact with the local people and solve their problems. It is true that the BJP’s working is better than ours,” the Himachal Pradesh Congress chief said.
Pratibha Singh further said she has conveyed her message to Himachal Pradesh chief minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu and asked him to strengthen the organisation.
“From day 1, I had been telling the CM that we would be able to face the upcoming election only if he strengthens the organisation. This is a very tough situation for us. We can see a lot of difficulties on the ground – as per the directions of PM Modi, BJP is going to do a lot of things,” she added.

Pratibha Singh, who is the wife of former Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh, appeared to back the six rebel MLAs who had cross-voted in Rajya Sabha elections and had openly spoken against the leadership of Sukhu, saying it was natural for them to be upset.
“Definitely, why not? When it has been more than a year and you take no cognizance or listen to them, it is natural for them to be upset. Had you sat them down, talked to them and found out a solution, this situation would not have occurred,” the state Congress chief said.

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Her remarks hinted that all is not well within the party. Pratibha’s son Vikramaditya Singh, who had also raised a banner of revolt by resigning on February 28 from the Council of ministers, met some of the rebel MLAs in Chandigarh, according to reports. Earlier, Vikramaditya had openly said that legislators had been sidelined, ignored and there was fiscal mismanagement. He had also alleged that the MLAs were overlooked and attempts were made to stifle their voices.
In the 2022 assembly elections, the Congress had won 40 seats, while the BJP bagged 25 in the 68-member state assembly. Pratibha Singh was among the contenders for the top post, but the party backed Sukhu as the chief minister. While the central observers claim that the Sukhu government will finish its 5-year-term, the remarks made by Pratibha and her son seem to suggest that the road ahead is going to be bumpy.

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