CM, 11 others take oath in Himachal Pradesh

Posted December 28, 2017

The BJP took nearly a week to decide on the Chief Minister after its chief ministerial candidate Dhumal lost the election.

Thakur, a confidant of Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda and associated with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, will take oath as the new Chief Minister along with his Cabinet colleagues at the Ridge in the state capital. The third-time legislator from the Kasauli assembly segment (reserved for the scheduled caste), Saizal is well known in party circles for his simplicity.

Others who were sworn-in as ministers, apart from Thakur, are Suresh Bhardwaj, Anil Sharma, Govind Thakur, Mahender singh, Sarveen Chaudhary, Ram Lal Markandaye, Vipin Parmar, Rajeev Saijal, Bikram Thakur, Kishan Kapoor and Virender Kanwar. One minister each hails from Kullu, Shimla, Solan, Una and Lahaul-Spiti.

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Former Horticulture Minister Narendra Bragta was denied a cabinet berth.

Soon after the results were announced, the BJP parliamentary committee had formed a two member team each for Gujarat and Himachal to decide for the probable candidates for the post. Thakur is from the Rajput community and appointing a Rajput Chief Minister would definitely favour the BJP, hence Thakur was chosen.

The BJP won 44 of the 68-seat Himachal Pradesh Assembly, ousting Congress from the hill state.

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Apart from the PM Modi and Rajnath Singh, the central ministers likely to attend the ceremony comprise Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj, Nitin Gadkari, Thawar Chand Gehlot while chief ministers likely to grace the occasion are Yogi Adityanath, Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Dr Raman Singh, Vasundhara Raje, Manohar Lal Khattar, Trivendra Singh Rawat, Pema Khandu, Vijay Rupani, N Biren Singh, Devendra Fadnavis, Raghubar Das and Sarbananda Sonowal.

BJP veteran and former Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani was also present.

Following Dhumal's defeat, Nadda appeared to be the obvious choice for chief minister but suddenly, five-time MLA from Seraj assembly constituency, Jai Ram raced to the frontline.

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State Transport Authority Secretary Vinay Singh was appointed Principal Private Secretary to the Chief Minister, a government spokesperson said.