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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Independents float non-political front

Dehradun, March 14
A fractured mandate in Uttarakhand has put a spotlight on three Congress rebels who along with the lone Uttarakhand Kranti Dal MLA today announced the creation of the Progressive Democratic Front (PDF), a non-political front that will keep a watch on the government.
Though the three rebels along with the UKD MLA have already extended support to the Congress, but they seem to be in no mood to rejoin the party.
“Despite being an old worker of the Congress, I was denied party ticket. I had no money to contest the elections, but with the support of the people, I have won. I owe my success to the public and there is no immediate plan to rejoin the Congress. The non-political front floated by us will keep an eye on the functioning of the government,” said MLA Mantri Prasad Naithaini.
By floating a non-political front, the three Congress rebel MLAs, Dinesh Dhanai, Harish Chandra Durgapal and Mantri Prasad Naithaini and UKD MLA Preetam Panwar seem to be pressing for a favourable bargain as the Congress finds itself in a tight spot mustering numbers due to a fractured mandate.
Before the swearing-in of the new Chief Minister, Vijay Bahuguna, it is believed that the Congress rebels had decided to extend conditional support provided their candidate was made the CM, but that has now become a thing of the past.
While the four MLAs were at the Chief Minister’s office, those close to the latter were seen making an assessment of the situation, waiting for fence sitters to cross over to their camp. However, that was not to be.
Even Congress rebel Dinesh Dhanai today made it clear that he would not be vacating his Tehri Assembly seat for Chief Minister Bahuguna as was indicated earlier. “This news is incorrect. I do not belong to the Congress and as such cannot be expected to vacate my seat,” he added. 

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