Dhumal downplays concerns raised by Shatna

Shimla: Downplaying the remarks made by senior party leader Shanta Kumar, that Himachal BJP leaders have turned a blind eye to internal matters of the party, chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal on Monday sought his "active support and advice" in ensuring party`s "mission repeat".

"Elder brother Shanta Kumar was a disciplined party soldier and had never challenged the party. I agree that he has some grievances relating to certain issues of development and delay in execution of few projects at Palampur including his dream project to built a super-speciality hospital for which a trust has been set up under his chairmanship," Dhumal said.

However, Dhumal steered clear of the issue raised by Kumar about the purported dissidence in the party. Kumar is also party`s national vice-president and Rajya Sabha MP from the state.

Dhumal declined to comment on the praise showered by Kumar on the BJP dissidents who have formed the Himachal Lokhit Party and said "it was an internal matter of the party and the party president could react on it."

He chose to talk about other issues raised by Kumar. "I will clarify the latest position and apprise him about the progress of ongoing four projects and I hope that Shanta ji will definitely agreed with our perceptions," Dhumal told media-persons after launching 20-episode documentary on Himachal`s sectoral development.

Dhumal said there had already been significant progress on Vivekanand Super Speciality project and the government has proposed setting up a medical college and nursing college to make the hospital project viable. "We are making efforts to ensure that the hospital project, medical college and nursing institute come up fast at Palampur to realise the cherished dream of Shanta," he said.

On the issue of creation of new districts, chief minister said Kumar would be consulted before taking a final decision and added that the demand for new districts had come from the people of the area and also some MLAs and the same was being considered by the government. Replying to questions the chief minister said efforts were on to ensure that Kumar attends next meet of the party`s core-group.