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Uttarakhand Polls: Projecting a CM Face Will Help BJP Win, Says Former CM

Former Uttarakhand Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank feels that a strong chief ministerial candidate could have benefited the BJP in the upcoming assembly polls.

Sumit Pande | CNN-News18

Updated:February 6, 2017, 7:07 PM IST
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Uttarakhand Polls: Projecting a CM Face Will Help BJP Win, Says Former CM
Former Uttarakhand Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank addressing a public rally.

Haridwar: Former Uttarakhand Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank feels that a strong chief ministerial candidate could have benefited the BJP in the upcoming assembly polls.

The main opposition party in the hill state is contesting this election against Harish Rawat led Congress government without projecting a CM face. Four former CMs and a slew of aspiring candidates now form the party panel campaigning for the elections in the hill state where voting will take place on the 15th of February.

"Our leadership would have taken the decision in the interest of the party. But when we have a strong name, and not merely someone for the sake of it, it helps" said Nishank.

"Yadi aisa koi hota to party ko shayad iska laabh hota.... Chote mote gadde bhar jate hein... Fir junoon ki tarah teem kaam karti hein" Nishank told CNN News18 while campaigning in Haridwar, his Lok Sabha constituency.

In contrast to the BJP, Congress' has unambiguously projected Harish Rawat as its face for the elections. And the entire Congress campaign is knit around the CM who has been extensively touring the state.

BJP as it takes on the Congress also faces rebellion in at least 18 seats. Party has given ticket to more than a dozen imports from the Congress, including 10 MLAs who rebelled against the Rawat Government last year.

Internal dissent is something party is closely watching out for. BJP lost the last elections by just one seat when the then CM Maj Gen B C Khanduri lost from Kotdwar amid allegations of internal sabotage.

Nishank however feels that rather than blaming others for the debacle in Uttarakhand, BJP should instead hold leadership accountable for the outcome.

"When we loose the elections we blame internal problems for that. I don't agree with that. It is the responsibility of the local leadership to put things in order inside the party", he said while adding, "Jo parivaar ka Mukhiya ho usme itni taakat honi chahiye ki sabko saanth leke chal sake".

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| Edited by: Sujit Nath
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