State Government says venue a ‘high risk’ area

Congress chief is scheduled to arrive in Bhopal on October 19

Party to decide my candidature: Suresh Pachouri

Bhopal: Hot on the heels of the Mayawati Government in Uttar Pradesh scuttling a public rally scheduled to be addressed by Congress president Sonia Gandhi in Rae Bareli on Tuesday, the BJP dispensation in Madhya Pradesh refused permission for her meeting here, citing a “high risk” venue for it.

“The permission for holding Congress president’s rally was denied by the State Government on the plea that the Lal Parade ground is a high-risk area,” MPCC President Suresh Pachouri told a press conference here.

He alleged that permission was denied under pressure from the BJP government in the State and added if this was not the case then the government should ask its officials on the issue. The Congress president is scheduled to arrive here on October 19 to launch her party’s poll campaign for the November 25 Madhya Pradesh Assembly polls.

Mr. Pachouri said a decision on whether he would contest the upcoming State Assembly elections would be taken by his party’s central leadership.

He said he had not applied for a ticket to contest the elections. In reply to a question, he said the committee drafting the Congress manifesto for the elections had already met thrice and the manifesto would be released soon.

Mr. Pachouri said the countdown for the BJP government had begun with the announcement of the date for the upcoming Assembly elections in the State. The BJP rule in Madhya Pradesh has been marked by a series of announcements that have not been implemented at all, Mr. Pachouri told reporters here.

“A large number of announcements have been made in the panchayats held by the Chief Minister, but no one knows how many of them have been implemented in reality,” he added. Mr. Pachouri said Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan and his ministers had gone on a foundation stone laying spree as they were scared of not coming to power again. - PTI