It was at the Ridge Maidan of Shimla on December 30 last year when Prof. Prem Kumar Dhumal took oath as the Chief Minister for the second time after BJP romped home to success in Himachal. And it was again December 30, this (2008) year at the same Ridge Maidan that the BJP government celebrated its first year of office with a proud bucket of achievements.
This time the added attraction was the presence of NDA'sPrime Ministerial candidate Shri Lal Krishna Advani, who blessed the Dhumal government, BJP organisation and the people with a pat on their back for having honoured more than 80 per cent of the promises held to the people during the election.
The crowd at the Ridge Maidan, the venue of the Vijay Sankalp Rally to celebrate one year of BJP government, was more thick and wide than the last year, indicating how the new government had endeared itself in the hearts of the people during the last one year.
Addressing the massive gathering, Shri Advani said he was in Shimla on this very day last year to wish Prof. Prem Kumar Dhumal well as he was sworn in as the state'sChief Minister. Today I have come here to congratulate him for serving the people of Himachal Pradesh as an excellent Chief Minister.
He said it had been a year of successful initiatives and achievements. Even independent observers have recognised this and complimented Dhumalji for it. He praised Dhumal government for Himachal having been ranked by India Today as No. 1 state in India in terms of its achievements in investment climate, primary education and healthcare. Himachal has also received the ?Diamond State Award?, the highest honour for environment protection and enlargement of green cover, he added.
Shri Advani said the entire five-year term of the Congress-led UPA Government has been a disaster for India and the year 2008 was by far the most disastrous with unprecedented price rise hitting the aam aadmi the hardest; one of the worst economic recessions in recent times; the most shameful episode of political corruption in the history of Indian Parliament; the worst year in terms of terrorist violence in India; UPA Government had no clear strategy, diplomatic, political or otherwise, to deal with the menace of terrorism.
Addressing the gathering, CM Prem Kumar Dhumal recounted the main achievements of his government saying that his government has tried to give relief of every section of society ? women, farmers, employees, youth, daily-wagers and unemployed. But we can accomplish much more if we get resources and full backing from the Centre, he added.
Virtually launching BJP'sLok Sabha poll campaign, Shri Dhumal exhorted the people to return all the four BJP candidates in the forthcoming election. ?Let'spledge to see Advaniji as the next PM,? Shri Dhumal said.
BJP vice-president and former CM Shri Shanta Kumar threw his weight behind Prof. Dhumal and said Himachal was the first State to get the principle of royalty on power accepted from the Centre to make the State financially self-reliant. He described Shri Dhumal'sachievements as outstanding by laying new milestones in development in the past one year.
All the BJP Ministers, MLAs and office-bearers of the party attended the Vijay Sankalp Rally. Shri Satyapal Jain, ex-MP incharge of party affairs in Himachal, state president Shri Jairam Thakur, Ministers Shri JP Naddha, Shri Rajiv Bindal and Shri Narinder Bragta also spoke in the rally. Shri Manohar Lal, organising secretary, Shri OP Dhankad, co-incharge were also present.