With Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu kicking off his week-long trip across Kangra, often regarded as the most politically significant district, the principal Opposition BJP hit out at the Congress over “not giving Kangra its due political share”.
Mr. Sukhu, on the first day of his visit in Dharamshala, on Tuesday reviewed the tourism and other flagship projects being executed in Kangra. Stressing the need to develop Kangra as the ‘tourism capital’ of the State, the Chief Minister emphasised the revival of traditional tourist destinations.
He said the State government was promoting water tourism, adventure tourism, religious and health tourism in Kangra district and would spend about ₹3,000 crore to develop infrastructure. “Air connectivity is essential to develop the Kangra district as the tourism capital and to achieve the same, the expansion of Kangra airport and construction of heliports in Rakkar and Palampur were under way,” he said.
Accusing the Congress-led State government of discrimination against the biggest district of the State, Kangra, former Chief Minister and Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, Jairam Thakur, told The Hindu, “Kangra is not getting its due political share, and this sentiment of discontentment is prevailing among the people of the district.. it [CM’s tour] is going to be a failed attempt.”
When asked about increasing the representation for Kangra by inducting more Ministers in the Cabinet, Mr. Thakur said “Definitely it should be increased. The people of Kangra are feeling ignored and cornered, and they have been raising their voice before the Chief Minister time and again for increased representation. Nothing is going to be achieved by touring Kangra,” he said.
The Chief Minister will be on Kangra tour from May 23 to 31, during which he will inaugurate and lay the foundation stone for various developmental projects and also intends to address the demands of the locals.
From Kangra district where the Congress has won 10 seats out of 15 in the 2022 Assembly election, only one legislator has made it to the Cabinet. Since Himachal Pradesh came into existence this has been the lowest representation Kangra has got in the Cabinet.
The Chief Minister has been dismissing the notion of poor representation from Kangra in his Cabinet, while his latest trip to the district is being seen as an attempt to silence his detractors.