The Congress has cleared a proposal to appoint Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel's rival TS Singh Deo as Deputy Chief Minister, ahead of polls in the state.
Hon'ble Congress President has approved the proposal for the appointment of Shri T. S. Singh Deo as the Deputy Chief Minister in the Chhattisgarh Government. pic.twitter.com/S4447cBHOu— INC Sandesh (@INCSandesh) June 28, 2023
“INC President Sh. Mallikarjun Kharge ji has approved the proposal for appointment of Sh. TS Singh Deo ji as the Deputy Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh,” party general-secretary KC Venugopal said in a tweet.
INC President Sh. Mallikarjun @kharge ji has approved the proposal for appointment of Sh. TS Singh Deo @TS_SinghDeo ji as the Deputy Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh.— K C Venugopal (@kcvenugopalmp) June 28, 2023
He is a loyal Congress leader and an able administrator. The state will benefit greatly from his services as…
“He is a loyal Congress leader and an able administrator. The state will benefit greatly from his services as Deputy CM,” the Rajya Sabha member added.
Top leaders of the Congress discussed the party's strategy ahead of the assembly polls slated for later this year in Chhattisgarh.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, former party chief Rahul Gandhi, Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, TS Singh Deo, besides the party's in-charge for the state Kumari Selja and general secretary, organisation, K C Venugopal were among the leaders who attended the meeting at the party headquarters in New Delhi.
CM Baghel later said on Twitter that the party was ready for assembly polls and the meeting discussed the changes in the lives of people following the 'Nava Chhattisgarh' model initiated by the Congress government in the state.
आज दिल्ली स्थित AICC मुख्यालय में माननीय राष्ट्रीय अध्यक्ष श्री @kharge जी, हमारे नेता श्री @RahulGandhi जी, संगठन महासचिव श्री @kcvenugopalmp जी, छत्तीसगढ़ प्रदेश प्रभारी @kumari_selja जी, प्रदेश अध्यक्ष श्री @MohanMarkamPCC जी एवं वरिष्ठ नेताओं की उपस्थिति में "नवा छत्तीसगढ़"… pic.twitter.com/sBCbBQKQRf— Bhupesh Baghel (@bhupeshbaghel) June 28, 2023
Singh Deo and Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel have been at loggerheads since the party came to power in the state in 2018.
In June 2021, the rivalry between the two came to the fore for a brief period after Baghel completed half term as chief minister. Singh Deo's supporters claimed that as per an understanding reached in 2018, he was supposed to take over after Baghel completed half of his term.
While Singh Deo later backed down after both the leaders visited Delhi and met the party high command, he voiced opposition to coal mine projects in the Hasdeo Arand forest area of Surguja district, and hinted that the truce was over.
Deo had tendered his resignation as Panchayat Minister, saying no funds were made available to his department and hence no work could be undertaken on the PM Awas Yojna to provide houses to the poor.
(This is a developing story. More details are awaited.)