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AAP steps up its electioneering in Himachal Pradesh

AAP workers take out the ‘victory’ march after AAP’s victory in the recent Punjab Assembly elections, in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh. | Photo Credit: PTI

Days after it sounded the bugle for the Assembly elections in Himachal Pradesh, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has stepped up the tempo of its electioneering in the run-up to the State Assembly elections, which are due in the later half of 2022.

After its emphatic win in the Assembly elections in the neighbouring State of Punjab, the party seems in no mood to let its flourishing momentum slow down going by its efforts to stimulate its cadre and galvanise public support. After holding a roadshow in Himachal Pradesh’s Mandi town on April 6, the AAP’s national convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is now set to visit the State on April 23 and address a public rally at Shahpur in Kangra district. This will be Mr. Kejriwal’s second public appearance in the hill State within a fortnight.

To ensure maximum participation of people in the forthcoming rally, party members are going door-to-door to appeal to people to visit the rally’s venue. Kangra is one of the most politically significant districts in the State, with as many as 15 Assembly constituencies. The party has already announced its decision to contest all 68 Assembly constituencies in the State.

On the lines of its election campaign in Punjab, the party is seeking “a chance” from voters in Himachal Pradesh to let it replicate the “Delhi and Punjab model of governance”, States where it’s in power. To make inroads in Himachal Pradesh, the party is focusing, among other issues, on providing improved education in schools and better health services, which have been neglected over the years, according to the AAP’s leaders, by successive Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) governments.

AAP leader and State spokesperson Gaurav Sharma told The Hindu that there’s great enthusiasm for the rally among AAP workers. “Not just the people of Kangra district, but also from neighbouring Una and Hamirpur, are very excited. Everyone witnessed the huge response to Mr. Kejriwal’s and Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann’s roadshow on April 6 in Mandi. The upcoming rally in Kangra shall witness far more crowds than the roadshow,” Mr. Sharma said.

“People have realised that only the AAP can provide a successful alternative to them in the State. The people are with us because they can see the honest work of development being done by our governments in Delhi and Punjab. Now, people want a Himachal model of governance and hence, they have made up their mind to bring the AAP government into the State. People are fed up with the hollow promises and failed policies of the ruling BJP, and the Congress as well,” he added.

The BJP’s national president, J.P. Nadda, is also slated to hold a roadshow for his party in Kangra district, from Kangra town to Nagrota Bagwan, on April 22, a day before Mr. Kejriwal’s rally. Both events are being seen as a show of strength for the respective parties.

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Printable version | Apr 20, 2022 4:55:33 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/aap-steps-up-its-electioneering-in-himachal-pradesh/article65338221.ece