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Search for right candidates’ initiated for assembly by-polls on 21 July

Search for right candidates’ initiated for assembly by-polls on 21 July
As Uttarakhand nears assembly by-polls from Doiwala, Dharchula and Someshwar (reserved) seats, the search for potential candidates has been initiated by both the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress. The by-elections will be held on 21 July and results will be declared on 25 July as per the information provided by chief electoral officer Radha Raturi.

In the last assembly election in 2012, former chief minister and BJP heavyweight Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank defeated senior Congress leader Hira Singh Bisht in a close-contested battle from Doiwala seat. In recently concluded parliamentary elections, he defeated Congress candidate Renuka Rawat by a record margin. The seat is vacant since he resigned from legislative assembly member.

After seeing the tide in favour of the BJP, two-time MLA and BJP national secretary Trivendra Singh Rawat is desperate to enter state assembly from Doiwala seat. He has openly challenged Rawat to fight against him from this seat which invited criticism from Congress circles.

Despite senior BJP leaders hold over the Doiwala seat, party Yuva Morcha president Saurabh Thapliyal is optimistic about getting a ticket. ‘Although senior BJP leaders in Delhi gave me assurance to go-ahead with the pre-poll preparations, but decisions are taken after getting feedbacks from all sides. Besides me, there are many contenders for this crucial seat. It’s the situation of wait and watch.’ 

BJP state media in-charge Umesh Aggarwal said, ‘Probably within one week the party will declare its candidates to contest from these vacant seats. We will send the name of three potential candidates from each seat to BJP high-command in Delhi. The central screening committee
will decide the final selection of the candidates from vacant seats.’

For Rawat, this assembly by-poll is very crucial as it is constitutionally mandatory for him to win this election in order to remain in office. One week back, Dharchula MLA Harish Dhami vacated his seat by submitted his resignation to assembly speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal in Gairsain special session. BJP candidates Bachi Singh Rawat and Prakash Pant are in no mood to contest for by-polls from Dharchula.  

A senior Congress leader on condition of anonymity said, ‘CM Harish Rawat may enter into assembly contest from two seats.

Apart from the safe Dharchula seat where party has strong control, he can also file his nomination papers from Doiwala seat.’

Senior Congress leader Hira Singh Bisht, who lost by a thin margin against BJP Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, in last assembly elections has showed interest in contesting again from the same seat. But according to Congress sources, party high command is checking the winning capability
of the potential candidates, as losing this seat means party stability can be at stake in state assembly.  
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