By ARUN PRATAP SINGH
DEHRADUN, 10 Oct: BJP’s Kiran Singh Chaudhary has been elected unopposed as District Panchayat Chairperson in Haridwar. This is the first time that BJP has managed to win district panchayat elections in Haridwar. Of course, while the BJP managed to win many seats in the district panchayat, the party’s victory to some extent can also be attributed to an effective post election management by the BJP. Many independent Pradhans and members of district panchayat were won over by the BJP. Not only this, several prominent leaders including from Congress and BSP were also convinced by the party to join the BJP before the elections. Among those who joined the BJP included son and daughter of Congress MLA from Bhagwanpur, Mamta Rakesh.
BJP also managed to ensure unopposed win of 5 Block Panchayat chiefs. Block Panchayat Presidents in Bahadurabad, Laksar, Bhagwanpur, Khanpur and Roorkee have been elected unopposed. Congress on the other hand, which had been strong traditionally in Haridwar, suffered a major loss of face. In Haridwar, presence of large number of Dalits and Muslim votes have had an important role to play in a good performance of Congress and BSP in Haridwar. This is the first time that both BSP and Congress have fared badly in the panchayat elections. This can be considered a setback to Congress as its tallest leader in Uttarakhand, Harish Rawat has already declared his intention to contest Lok Sabha elections from Haridwar Lok Sabha seat. On the other hand, BJP’s performance in Haridwar Panchayat elections should come as a major personal boost for Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, who has managed to keep his image intact, despite some recent exposure of scams related to recruitments in the state.