Shimla: Congress might have tried its best to end the bickering within the party by bolstering its ranks before the battle royale.

With MP Mandi Pratibha Singh as party head and four working presidents Rajinder Rana, Harsh Mahajan, Vinay Kumar and Pawan Kajal in state party rank is something new in the state politics, but most interesting political development has come to the fore in Shimla Urban Assembly constituency where the party has named five party’s ticket aspirants its Vice-Presidents.

In its recent list of a party office bearers, six leaders viz. Harish Janartha, Naresh Chauhan, Surender Chauhan, Maheshwar Chauhan, Mohinder Chauhan and Arki MLA Sanjay Awasthy have been appointed Vice-Presidents of which five are from Shimla constituency and all are eyeing party tickets.

Harish Janartha has unsuccessfully contested the assembly election from Shimla in 2012 on a Congress ticket and in 2017 as an independent candidate. He lost the 2012 election in a close contest to BJP’s Suresh Bhardwaj. Janartha had remained Deputy Mayor of Shimla MC till 2012.

The aspiration of Naresh Chauhan to contest from Shimla is also an open secret and even in the 2017 election, he had staked a claim for the ticket. It’s learned that Chauhan has already started mobilizing peoples’ support for the forthcoming assembly elections and is active in Shimla city politics.

Surender Chauhan has also remained a councillor in Shimla MC twice and also remained a ticket aspirant from Shimla urban constituency. Whereas the aspiration of Maheshwar Chauhan, a close confidant of Leader of opposition Mukesh Agnihotri, is not hidden from anyone.   

Mohinder Chauhan, a close associate of former state party president and Campaign committee head Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, has also been eyeing the party preference from the Shimla city.

It’ll be interesting to observe the city politics with a high five in Shimla city, but with Anand Sharma as chairman of the steering committee, Congress might be looking to give some new political dimension to the state.

It’s also to note that Congress had won the Shimla Urban seat in 2003 and since then party, despite being the home of Congress stalwart Virbhadra Singh, Vidya Stokes and Anand Sharma, has failed to win the seat.