Kangana a threat to Himachal BJP leadership: Vikramaditya Singh

This is the first time that a celebrity is contesting an election in Himachal Pradesh

Updated - April 15, 2024 12:09 pm IST

Published - April 15, 2024 07:49 am IST - Shimla

Vikramaditya Singh is a two-time MLA from Shimla (Rural) Assembly constituency. File

Vikramaditya Singh is a two-time MLA from Shimla (Rural) Assembly constituency. File | Photo Credit: Akhilesh Kumar

Actor Kangana Ranaut's entry into Himachal Pradesh politics has threatened the future prospects of the State BJP leaders, her opponent, Public Works Minister and Congress candidate from Mandi Lok Sabha seat, Vikramaditya Singh, said on Sunday.

The BJP has named Ms. Kangana as its candidate from the Mandi Parliament seat. This is the first time that a celebrity is contesting an election in Himachal Pradesh.

Vikramaditya Singh, the titular king of the erstwhile princely state of Bushahr, is the son of six-time chief minister Virbhadra Singh. His mother Pratibha Singh is the sitting MP from Mandi and the Congress' state unit president.

He is a two-time MLA from Shimla (Rural) Assembly constituency.

The speech made by Ms. Kangana in Manali on Thursday overshadowed the BJP State leadership's Hamirpur rally, with which the party launched its election campaign, Vikramaditya Singh told PTI.

"The State BJP leaders are feeling threatened by Ms. Kangana who has overshadowed the BJP leaders by her controversial outburst," he said.

Ms. Kangana in her rally had taken a dig at the "dynastic and family-centric" Bollywood, which, she said, undermined her career in the industry.

She also launched a blistering attack on certain political families, including that of former Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, and dubbed Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Vikramaditya Singh as "Bada Pappu and Chhota Pappu."

Vikramaditya Singh said the actor may be hogging the limelight with her controversial remarks, diverting the focus away from senior party leaders, but "It is your work and service to people that gets you support and not the celebrity tag."

"I have always risen above the political lines in matters of development, and as a Public Works Minister, I was successful in getting ₹3,000 crore from the Centre for my department. I will continue to work for the development of the State," he said.

"I have a successful track record and would replicate the model in time to come but Ms. Kangana has to answer where she was when the worst-ever monsoon disaster hit the State, what has been her contribution to the welfare of Mandi, and how, being a celebrity, she would do justice to the constituency," the Minister added.

Both Vikramaditya Singh and Ms. Kangana have come up with derisive monikers for each other in the run-up to the elections. Mr. Singh termed her the "Queen of Controversy" and Ms. Kangana called him the "Chota Pappu" who is banking on his "dynastic legacy."

Polling in the State will take place on June 1.

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