Shimla: Five-time Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Jairam Thakur will be the new Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh after he was elected as the leader of the BJP legislature party on Sunday.
The decision was taken at a meeting of BJP MLAs. Thakur's name was proposed by Suresh Bharadwaj and Mahender Singh and seconded by other members. The meeting was held under the supervision of BJP’s central observers – Union minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Narendra Singh Tomar.
BJP delegation met Himachal Pradesh governor Acharya Dev Vrat later on Sunday and staked claim to form government in the state. Thakur will be sworn in as the chief minister of Himachal Pradesh on Wednesday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the swearing in ceremony.
Announcing Thakur’s name, Tomar said: “Former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal Ji proposed Jairam Thakur Ji to be elected as the Legislature party leader. Shanta Kumar Ji and JP Nadda Ji also supported this proposal”. Nadda was also in the race for the post.
The decision comes a day after Dhumal ruled himself out from the race for the post of Himachal Pradesh chief minister. Although the BJP ousted the Congress in Himachal by winning in 44 of the 68 Assembly constituencies, Dhumal lost his seat to his opponent Rajendra Rana. Despite the loss, the 73-year-old was in the race for the chief ministerial post after several loyal lawmakers offered him their fresh-won seats.
Thakur, 57, addressed the media after the BJP elected him as the Legislature party leader and thanked everyone, including Dhumal for proposing his name.
The lawmaker from Seraj constituency served as the BJP's state chief between 2006 and 2009. Considered a popular face in Himachal Pradesh, Thakur was credited with striking a balance between the warring factions of the BJP.
(With agency inputs)...