Updated April 13th, 2024 at 17:23 IST

TOP STORY/ Kangana Ranaut vs Vikramaditya Singh on Mandi LS Seat? How Things Stand

Mandi holds significance as a traditional stronghold for the Congress party.

Reported by: Digital Desk
Mandi Lok Sabha Seat: How Things Stand | Image:Republic Digital
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Mandi, Himachal Pradesh: The Congress will give a ticket to Vikramaditya Singh to take on BJP candidate Kangana Ranaut from Mandi, sources told Republic World. For the unversed, Vikramaditya Singh hails from a political dynasty in Mandi, where both his father, the former chief minister Virbhadra Singh, and his mother, Pratibha Singh, have been elected thrice. 

"Consensus has been reached on the Mandi seat in favour of Vikramaditya", Congress Himachal Pradesh chief Pratibha Singh told reporters. 

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Earlier while speaking to reporters on Vikramaditya Singh's candidature, Pratibha Singh had said, "It was the suggestion of the senior leaders of the party that Vikramaditya Singh is a young face, youth leader, who has a good connect with the youth. The party high command has accepted this and they will give their decision on it soon."  

What Transpired in the Himachal Pradesh CEC Meeting? 

"In the meeting, we discussed how to win all 4 seats of Himachal Pradesh. We have decided on candidates for two seats, for the remaining two seats, the discussions will continue", Congress leader Rajeev Shukla said.

Himachal Pradesh Deputy CM Mukesh Agnihotri said, "There are 4 seats in Himachal Pradesh. It has been decided that candidates for 50% of seats will be announced first. The remaining 50% of seats will be announced later. We have decided that we will field MLAs..."

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About Vikramaditya Singh

  • Political Legacy: Vikramaditya Singh, son of the six-time Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Virbhadra Singh, inherits a significant political legacy, providing him with a strong foundation in the state's political landscape.
  • Political Career: With two consecutive terms as MLA from Shimla Rural and prior service as the Himachal Youth Congress president, Vikramaditya Singh has established himself as a prominent figure in Himachal Pradesh politics, particularly among the youth.
  • Controversies:  Vikramaditya Singh gained attention for attending the pran-pratishtha ceremony at Ayodhya's Ram Mandir, contrary to his party's line. He clarified that his attendance was not political but personal, citing his father's devotion to Lord Ram.
  • Resignation and Support: During a recent political crisis in the state, Vikramaditya Singh resigned from the cabinet of Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu. He subsequently showed support to rebel MLAs who were disqualified for defying the party's directives during the Rajya Sabha elections and budget session.   

Mandi Lok Sabha Seat: How Things Stand  

The Mandi Lok Sabha constituency encompasses 17 Assembly segments, including prominent areas like Bharmour, Lahaul and Spiti, Kinnaur, Manali, Kullu, Banjar, Anni, Karsog, Sundernagar, Nachan, Seraj, Darang, Joginder Nagar, Mandi, Balh, Sarkaghat, and Rampur. Among these, the BJP secured victories in twelve Assembly segments.

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The Lahaul and Spiti Assembly seat fell vacant following the disqualification of Congress MLA Ravi Thakur by the Speaker, adding an interesting dynamic to the political landscape.

Mandi holds significance as a traditional stronghold for the Congress party, which has won nine elections and a by-poll from this Lok Sabha constituency in the past. However, the BJP managed to break this streak by winning the seat in the 2014 and 2019 general elections.

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In the 2019 Elections, the Mandi constituency witnessed a fiercely contested battle with a notable 77.32% voter turnout. Ram Swaroop Sharma, the candidate from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), emerged victorious then with a substantial victory margin of 4,05,459 votes. He secured a total of 6,47,189 votes, consolidating his position in the constituency.

Ram Swaroop Sharma's arch-rival Aashray Sharma from the Indian National Congress (INC), had garnered 2,41,730 votes.  The BJP's impressive performance saw a notable increase of 18.81% in their vote share compared to previous elections, largely attributed to the Modi wave. 

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Published April 13th, 2024 at 17:03 IST