The supporters of Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee President Pratibha Singh showcased their strength at Oberoi Cecil Hotel in Shimla where the central observer meeting was being held. They shouted slogans demanding Singh to be named the new chief minister of the state. The Congress observers — Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and former chief minister of Haryana Bhupinder Singh Hooda — and AICC in-charge for Himachal Pradesh Rajeev Shukla met Singh at the hotel. They also met Governor Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar ahead of a meeting of the newly elected MLAs to pick CM.
With the Congress wresting power in Himachal Pradesh by bagging 40 seats in the 68-seat Assembly, the race has begun for the chief minister’s post. Congress has indicated that a resolution will be passed authorizing the AICC president to elect the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader as at least three members — state party president Singh, former party chief Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu, and outgoing CLP leader Mukesh Agnihotri — have staked a claim for the Chief Minister’s post.
Following the BJP’s defeat in the polls, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Thursday pointed out that the difference in the number of votes between his party and the Congress was less than 1 percent. “I want to thank Election Commission for conducting elections peacefully. As far as I know, re-polling in any poll booth was not required,” PM Modi said. Traditionally, Himachal Pradesh has never repeated a government in power in the last 37 years. The pragmatic Himachali voter has always thought it best not to let any party get too comfortable in the seat.