No surprises in HP Cong panel for party tickets

The state election committee of the Congress has included names of all three sitting party MPs in the panel of candidates for tickets for the ensuing Lok Sabha elections.

Written by Express News Service | Shimla | Published: February 1, 2009 1:03:28 am

The state election committee of the Congress has included names of all three sitting party MPs in the panel of candidates for tickets for the ensuing Lok Sabha elections.

Names of former CM Virbhadra Singh and Narender Thakur,the former BJP leader from Hamirpur who had recently deflected to the Congress,have also been forwarded to the party high command for a final decision,after a meeting held here today.

Though all senior party officials remained tightlipped on the outcome of the meeting,refusing to reveal names,well-placed sources in the party said that the list includes three names for Mandi,five for Hamirpur and one each for Shimla and Kangra.

For Mandi,sitting MP Pratibha Singh,former CM Virbhadra Singh and former Union Minister Sukh Ram have been sent,sources said.

Sukh Ram,interestingly,had announced retirement from active politics last year.

For Hamirpur,according to sources,five names have been forwarded,including those of Narender Thakur,son of former BJP leader Jagdev Chand; former minister Ranjeet Singh Verma; Hamirpur District Congress Committee president Sunil Bitto; former state Youth Congress president Kuldeep Pathania; and M P S Rana.

It is learnt that Rana and Pathania had sent in applications for the ticket,which were attached and forwarded with the panel.

Sitting MPs Chander Kumar from Kangra and Dhani Ram Shandil from Shimla are the other names. There is likely to be no change in their candidature. The proposal to field sitting MLAs was turned down right at the outset,sources added.

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