Jai Ram Thakur Selected As Himachal CM, Has Strong RSS Links

Saul Bowman
December 28, 2017

The swearing-in ceremony at the historic Ridge here was also attended by Union Ministers Rajnath Singh, J.P. Nadda and Nitin Gadkari, besides Chief Ministers of Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled states, along with more than 30,000 party supporters from across the state, mostly in traditional attire.

A day after Vijay Rupani was sworn in for a second term as Gujarat Chief Minister amidst a great show of power of the BJP, Jai Ram Thakur is set to take oath as the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh on Wednesday, along with a few MLAs as Cabinet Ministers.

Governor Acharya Devvrat administered the oath of office and secrecy to the 52-year-old Thakur and eleven other Ministers which included six new faces. The Mandi parliamentary constituency has been accorded three cabinet berths, besides that of the chief minister, while Kangra and Hamirpur have three each.

The supporters of Dhumal were still hoping for him to become the Chief Minister, they also questioned the decision to shift Dhumal from his original seat at Hamirpur to Sujanpur, where it was clear that despite his candidature, it was hard to defeat the Congress leader, Rajinder Rana. Stokes, who contested and won from the Theog assembly seat of Shimla district in 2012, announced she would vacate the seat for former chief minister Virbhadra Singh. Ms Sarveen Chaudhry is the lone woman in the cabinet.

Suresh Bharadwaj and Gobind Singh Thakur took oath in Sanskrit, while the others took oath in Hindi.

Son of former Telecom Minister Sukh Ram, Anil Sharma defected to the Congress and joined the BJP before the assembly elections in November. He was also a Minister of State from 1993-97.

Shimla: The newly constituted Himachal Pradesh cabinet today approved lowering the age for providing social security pension, from 80 years to 70 years, along with removal of chairpersons/vice chairpersons and non-official members of boards and corporations with immediate effect. Senior leader and former minister Rajeev Bindal was however excluded from the list. While BJP won 44 seats, Dhumal lost from Sujanpur by a margin of 1,919 votes.

A decision on Thakur's name was taken unanimously on December 24 at the BJP Legislative Party meeting here, where central observers - Union Ministers Nirmala Sitharaman and Narendra Singh Tomar - were present.

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