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Himachal Pradesh elections: OBC voters put parties on edge

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The Times Of India
22nd October, 2019 08:40 IST

DHARAMSHALA: Dharamshala is the second important seat after Shimla in Himachal Pradesh and voting trends here indicate a three-way contest. The areas with majority of population from other backward community (OBC) have witnessed high percentage of voting in comparison with others.

Ghana, Bagli and Bhadwal have registered 70.12%, 73.10% and 79.76% voting. The other booths with majority OBC population were Dhagwar (72.63%), Sukkar (69.12%), Kanned (77.87%) and Thamba (73.92%). Balla and Kariana recorded 77% and 72.72%.

As both the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress fielded leaders from Gaddi community, a BJP rebel from OBC community, Rakesh Choudhary, had contested polls as independent candidate. The rebel was backed by the community leaders. He also got support from other disgruntled leaders of BJP and the Congress.

Harish Gajju, the election official here confirmed that voting percentage was more in the belts with majority of OBC population.

The belts that mostly had Gaddi community population have shown a downward trend in voting percentage. In booths located at main market did not see not much footfall despite it was a weekly holiday for shopkeepers. Final percentage was yet to be calculated, as polling was underway till the filling of this report.

Now, the buzz in the grapevine was that the OBC community, which was feeling slighted by both BJP and the Congress for choosing Gaddi candidates, might have come together to show their might. Naturally, both Congress and BJP are said to be apprehensive of the outcome.

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