The Himachal Congress on Saturday accused the BJP's Jai Ram government in the state of keeping officials under a threat to ensure its win in the October 21 by-polls for Dharamshala assembly or face transfer to the state's remote and difficult areas. The party also alleged the state government has stalled all the Congress-initiated developmental works here and has refrained from starting a single project since coming to the power nearly two years ago simply because the Congress has a majority in the Dharmshala Municipal Corporation.
The BJP government has created an atmosphere of terror in this by-election in Dharamshala. The government machinery is being openly misused by the Jai Ram government in the state," Congress' MP Viplov Thakur, representing Himachal Pradesh in Rajya Sabha, told a news conference here.
"Employees are being threatened to be shifted to difficult and remote areas if they do not work to ensure the BJP's victory in the by-election," she said.
She, however, asserted that the voters in the area have adopted a strategic silence, which indicates a change in their mindset and a "sure win" for the Congress.
Former Union Minister Chandresh Kumari accused the Union and state governments of withholding all developmental works in Kangra district.
"During the past seven years, the BJP government in the Centre has sanctioned no project for Kangra district, particularly of Dharamshala. The Modi government has withheld all development works of the area," she alleged.
Endorsing Kumari's allegations of the Central and state governments withholding all developmental works in Dharamshala, former state minister and senior Congress leader said, "All developmental works in Dharamshala initiated during the Congress rule have been totally stopped and no fresh plan or project is being brought by the BJP government in its two years of rule."
Another Congress politician G. S. Bali said various projects like the creation of a Central university in Himachal and building its campus, building a new bus stand in Dharamshala and the smart city project for it have all been shelved.
"The Congress lost in the Lok Sabha election early this year because of the voting on the emotional issue of Pulwama attack", said Bali, adding the present assembly by-poll, however, is being fought on local issues like development, water scarcity, drug menace and price rise, and the Congress will surely win in this election.
"During the Congress rule, we had given around Rs 200 crore as the state's share to Dharamshala Municipal Corporation to implement the Smart City project, but the BJP has stopped the funds for the project," Bali alleged. The Congress leaders said the party is totally united and the public is sick of the BJP rule and Congress candidate Vijay Inder Karan will surely win in this by-election. Dharamshala will go to poll on October 21 and the result shall be declared on October 24.