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Himachal Pradesh: Former Congress minister rolls out initiative for jobless youths

Shimla: Amid growing tussle within the Congress over leadership in Himachal Pradesh, former minister G S Bali on Sunday rolled out a new initiative to woo unemployed youths and also those who have lost their jobs during the Covid time.

Bali, who had lost his election in 2017 from Nagrota Bhagwan in Kangra, is pitching back for the Chief Ministerial race even as several other contenders are trying to hog the limelight, hosting luncheon meetings with MLAs and former legislators.

In his self-induced initiative that minister announced through a social media interactive session with youths, he said a registration drive has been started to generate a complete profile of the unemployed youths.

"The forms will be made available to the youths free of cost and every minute detail sought will be tabulated to create a data bank. This will help the next elected government to frame a policy for employment.The idea is to make Himachal Pradesh free from unemployment and productively engage the youths in dignified earning," Bali informed.

The former minister said thousands of youths, who were working in some of the leading Indian and multi-national companies, have returned back to the state during the Covid-19 lockdown as they feared about the infection.

During earlier Congress government, Bali's strong public pressures had forced his own government to fulfil its commitment to provide unemployment allowance to the educated jobless youths–a promise made in the manifesto but forgotten by the Congress Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh.

Six-time Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh though had declared in 2017 polls as being his last, however, hasn't fully given up despite his inactiveness . Some days back, his MLA son Vikramaditya Singh played host to a luncheon meeting inviting MLAs, former MLAs and PCC leaders.

This was after former minister Kaul Singh Thakur-who is Chief Ministerial aspirant had also hosted a lunch for sitting and former MLAs, wherein they tried to work out a strategy as how best Thakur could be pitched for the leadership.

Former PCC president Sukhwinder Sukhu and former minister Sudhir Sharma, a Virbhadra Singh loyalist, also attended. Bali, on the other hand is upto his own game, racking-up issues of unemployment and neglect of Kangra by the incumbent, and also earlier Congress leaderships.

The elections in the state are still two-and-half-year away but Congress leaders have crossed swords, including a discreet move to seek ouster of sitting PCC president Kuldeep Rathore, who is backed by Virbhadra Singh.

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