Jairam Thakur Is the New Himachal CM, Modi to Attend Swearing-In
Jairam Thakur being congratulated by JP Nadda. 
Jairam Thakur being congratulated by JP Nadda. (Photo: IANS)

Jairam Thakur Is the New Himachal CM, Modi to Attend Swearing-In

Five-time BJP MLA Jairam Thakur is all set to be the new Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh after he was elected as the leader of the BJP legislature party. The decision was taken at a meeting of BJP MLAs.

Jairam Thakur will swear-in as the CM on 27 December, in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah.

The Chief Ministers of BJP-ruled states will also be attending the swearing-in ceremony, said a senior BJP leader.

Jairam Thakur won from Seraj constituency by defeating Chet Ram of the Congress by over 10,000 votes.

His name was proposed by Suresh Bharadwaj and Mahender Singh, and seconded by other members.

Former Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal had opted out of the race late on 23 December.

A lack of consensus among the newly-elected MLAs had resulted in the two central observers – Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman and Narendra Singh Tomar – returning to Delhi from Shimla on 23 December to hold fresh consultations with the central leadership.

A two-member team of central observers, which was in the hill state on 21 and 22 December, had taken feedback from members of the state BJP's core committee, MPs and some MLAs.

So Why Thakur?

A senior party leader had previously said that Thakur has "suitable credentials" for the post as he has been a member of ABVP, the student wing affiliated to BJP's ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

He had said that Thakur has been BJP state unit chief, a state Minister and has been elected five times as an MLA. 

Another factor that worked in Thakur’s favour is that the party will not need to contest a by-election now.

While Thakur was the key face in the chief ministerial race, other names that were doing the rounds were of Union Health Minister JP Nadda and party MLA Rajeev Bindal.

The BJP wrested power in Himachal from the Congress, winning close to two-thirds majority with 44 seats in the 68-member assembly. The Congress won 21 seats, independents two and the Communist Party of India-Marxist one.

(With PTI and IANS inputs)

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