Stop wearing political loyalties on heads: Himachal CM
Shimla, Feb 25 (IANS) Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on Sunday asked people in the state, especially government functionaries, to stop wearing political loyalties on their heads, literally.
Ending decades of practice that his predecessors promoted, he said at a public meeting in Solan town that the time has come to bid farewell to cap politics in the state.
A common practice is that if your cap is maroon in front, then you must be a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) supporter. And if it's green, then you are with the Congress.
The concepts of "green" and "maroon" stem from upper and lower areas of the state. The green symbolises descendants of upper Himachal, while the maroon represents lower Himachal.
It started with six-time Congress Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, who loves to don a green flap headgear almost throughout the year. His supporters too prefer to wear this colour of cap to express their political solidarity with him.
Likewise, BJP leader and two-time Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has made the maroon flap his trademark.
Thakur, who did not wear the trademark maroon flap cap of the BJP at the oath taking ceremony on December 27, said he would not indulge in cap politics as he himself stopped wearing it.
Putting an end to cap politics without naming his predecessor Dhumal, he said "he prefers the caps as they are inseparable part of Himachali culture but not as a symbol of regional divide of upper and lower Himachal as considered during the previous Congress regime".
During the state Assembly elections last November, the BJP garnered support on the social media through photos of Prime Minister Narendra Modi wearing the traditional Himachali 'topi'.
The photo of Modi wearing the maroon cap during the remembrance ceremony for the Holocaust victims in Israel in July last year was taking a political hue in that election.
"Prime Minister Modi made the Himachali cap the crown in Israel. Thank you," tweeted Anurag Thakur, the BJP MP from Hamirpur and former BCCI president -- and Dhumal's son.