Independent Theog candidate promises to support Virbhadra

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Shimla, Dec 14 (UNI) Independent candidate, Rakesh Verma, from Theog constituency in Shimla has promised to support state Chief Minister Virbahdra Singh after winning elections from the assembly segment inspite of being denied a ticket by the Congress.

Expressing confidence that he would win the Theog seat, Mr Verma told reporters here today, ''I have decided to extend my support to Mr Singh after polls.'' Mr Verma, who fought the 2003 state assembly elections against Congress' official candidate Rajender Verma, was the party's associate member in the HP Assembly during the last four and a half years.

He said since Theog constituency had witnessed phenomenal development in social sectors during the Congress rule, he was extending his support to the Chief Minister.

However, Mr Verma said if the Congress party spurned his offer he would then consult his voters and decide his future course of action.

Referring to his support to the Congress in the last general elections, he said its candidate from Shimla parliamentary constituency had received the second highest lead from his constituency after Rohru segment.

''Even last time, I had decided to extend support to the Congress before it had returned to power,'' he added.

Four Congress associate members, who had contested and won elections against the official party candidates were made party candidates while Mr Verma was denied the ticket following strong opposition from the state Power Minister Vidya Stokes.

UNI

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