SHIMLA: Five-term MLA Jairam Thakur is set to become the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh. The decision was taken in the meeting of Bharatiya Janata Party MLAs in Shimla on Sunday. Central observers for Himachal Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman and Narendra Singh Tomar were also present for the meeting.
"Jairam Thakur will be the Legislature party leader in Himachal Pradesh. Thakur's name was proposed by former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal and was accepted by all party members in the meeting," Narendra Singh Tomar said.
The swearing-in ceremony may take place on Monday where BJP President Amit Shah is likely to be present. If not on Monday, the ceremony will take place on 27 December.
Elated with the announcement, Thakur thanked everyone for their support in bringing the party to power in the state. "I thank the central leadership, Prem Kumar Dhumal ji who proposed my name supported by JP Nadda, Shanta Kumar ji. We will work together for the progress of the state," Thakur said.
Thakur was in a close race with JP Nadda for the CM post. The two-member team of central observers was in the state on December 21 and 22 to take the views of BJP members
Thakur won from Seraj constituency by defeating Chet Ram of the Congress. He was a cabinet minister in the BJP ministry in the hill state. He was Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj. He was elected to Himachal Pradesh Assembly from Mandi and had won his first election in the year of 1998.
Dhumal, a former chief minister was the party's candidate for the job, but suffered a shock defeat in the polls. Thereafter he had said that he will not become the CM.
"There is speculation in media that I am in race for the post of the chief minister. I had made it clear on the day of the result that I am not in any race," Dhumal said.
The BJP won the recently held Assembly polls in Himachal Pradesh ousting Congress from power by winning 44 of the 68 seats.