Former Himachal Pradesh BJP chief and local MLA, Suresh Bharadwaj today accused the Congress government of discriminating against Shimla and “undermining” its importance. Participating in the discussion on budget, he lashed out at the government for first “ignoring” Shimla and bringing Dharamshala in the smart city project of Government of India by “fudging the data” and now deciding to have second capital at Dharamshala. Asserting that Shimla was the summer capital of erstwhile British India that included India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and some other areas, Bharadwaj said, “The chief minister is doing all this to pamper just one minister.”
“Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh is trying to play politics now by notifying Dharamshala as second capital and that too at a time when the government has not been able to provide proper systems at Shimla,” Bharadwaj said, adding that earlier also, the chief minister tried to gain political mileage in Kangra by having second Vidhan Sabha building in Dharamshala but it did not work.
“The government will not benefit from such gimmick like second capital status to Dharamsala as people want development, which is not taking place.
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“The people of Kangra already know that the Congress party had never allowed the leadership to go to lower areas of Himachal and it was the BJP which gave two chief ministers, Shanta Kumar and Prem Kumar Dhumal from lower areas,” he said.
Bharadwaj attacked the Health minister, Kaul Singh Thakur for ignoring the development of premier Indira Gandhi Medical College in Shimla and taking the Medical University to Mandi.
He also criticised the government for “abject failure” to maintain essential services like water and power supply and road connectivity in the wake of snowfall in Shimla on January 6 and 7 this year.
He said that people were made to live without power for a week and water for even a longer time.
He said the “residents of Shimla were supplied sewer mixed water for drinking” last year, which led to outbreak of jaundice and claimed more than 20 lives.
He dismissed the budget as a mere statement of “hollow announcements”.
Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Nand Lal appreciated the CM for his prudent financial management.