Himachal Congress leaders criticized Arun Dhumal’s statement against Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, which he had made yesterday in a press conference at Shimla and termed that malicious and false propaganda against him.

In a joint statement Kewal Singh Pathania, Vice Chairman, H.P. Forest Development Corporation and Prem Kaushal, Chairman, APMC Hamirpur accused Dhumal family for indulging in mud slinging and cheap politics just to divert the attention of the people from their misdeeds.

Congress leaders said that Arun Dhumal and his family had been raising the same issues time and again without any substance. They said that it seemed Arun Dhumal was being played like a record on an old record player which was stuck up at one point. They said that the Dhumals must realize that the people of the State were wise enough and can not be misled by their false propaganda. This is why the people of the State had rejected the BJP under P.K. Dhumal in the State in Vidhan Sabha Elections and Mandi bye elections.

They advised Arun Dhumal to check the facts before making wild accusations. They said that M/s Venture Energy and Technology Ltd. was awarded Saikoti Project in the year 2002 vide MoU dated 14.6.2002 during the regime of Prem Kumar Dhumal as Chief Minister. The said project was issued show cause notice in December, 2002 and cancellation process was initiated in January, 2003 by the erstwhile Prem Kumar Dhumal Government for reasons best known to them. During April 2003 to 2004 the company approached Virbhadra Singh Government but the proposal to restore the project was rejected thrice by the Cabinet of Virbhadra Singh Government. Then the company approached the Hon’ble High Court of H.P. in 2005. Hon’ble High Court vide its order dated 8th June, 2005 and 19th July, 2005 awarded the project back to HPSEB.

The Company then approached the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India which passed orders for restoration of the Sai Kothi hydro project back to Ms Venture energy and technologies Ltd vide their orders dated 5/9/2005 and 2007. Purely based on directions of Hon’ble Supreme Court orders and intervention the project was restored back in June, 2007 and not by Virbhadra Singh as claimed by Arun Dhumal, they added.

Regarding penalties raised on the company by Directorate of Energy was done in early 2011 due to New Power Policy by Dhumal which the company has already paid under protest an amount of Rs. 60 lakh approximately. The Company sought time to pay the additional Rs. 58 lakhs raised in 2012-13 by way of Interest etc., they said.
They said that Arun Dhumal has failed to mention about Hon’ble Supreme Court restoration orders and has, instead, connected it illegally to present Government for drawing political mileage.

Pathania and Kaushal asked Arun Dhumal as to what credentials he had to point a finger at Virbhadra Singh who had a distinguished political career of over five decades and was a six time Chief Minister besides remaining Union Minister on many occasions. They said that it has become a habit with Dhumals to create falsehood by fabricating baseless stories. They had tried their best earlier also to implicate Virbhadra Singh in false cases but every time he had come out clean. He said that no other BJP leader except for They accused that Dhumal family was resorting to false propaganda against the Chief Minister and it was also surprising that BJP leaders were completely silent on the enquiry being conducted against Dhumal family.

They said that Dhumal family stood marginalized in the BJP after their misdeeds were coming to the fore. The popularity of Virbhadra Singh and stream of developmental works launched by the Congress Government in the State under his stewardship have completely baffled them. After loss of power they are seeing imminent defeat in the forthcoming parliamentary election which has made them nervous and shaky. Desperate Dhumals were making baseless personal attacks on Virbhadra Singh and his family members out of frustration.

They advised Arun Dhumal to confirm from his father, Prem Kumar Dhumal that how many projects were given clearance and extension during his regime. They said that if Dhumals were not clear on it, the present Government can provide them the entire details. They said that Arun Dhumal has forgot that how the BJP encroached upon right to privacy of individuals in the infamous phone tapping episode, besides, how the BJP indulged in benami land transactions of which the record of their misdeeds are with the vigilance.

Congress leaders said that income tax returns of Virbhadra Singh were no business of Arun Dhumal and it was for income tax authorities to see. There was nothing wrong in any individual taking loan from anybody when it was duly documented. Dhumals were unnecessarily trying to mislead the people by creating hype in the media. They said that their ulterior designs would not succeed as there was no truth in them.

They asked the Dhumal family to first explain their own position in HPCA and Premu land case. They advised Arun Dhumal to refrain from making false and baseless allegations against Virbhadra Singh who was a popular leader of the masses and a man of high integrity.

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Rahul Bhandari is Editor of TheNewsHimachal and has been part of the digital world for last 15 years.