Dhumal is BJP’s CM face for Himachal

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 01 Nov 2017 09:05:31



PREM Kumar Dhumal, who has been the Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister twice, was on Tuesday declared the BJP’s chief ministerial candidate by its President Amit Shah in the poll-bound State.

Shah’ announcement at a public meeting, barely days before the Assembly polls scheduled for November 9, seemed to be driven by the party’ calculation that the 73-year-old leader remains its best bet to oust the Virbhadra Singh-led Congress Government in the State.

Union Minister J P Nadda was seen as another strong contender for the party’ choice for the top post due to his perceived proximity to its Central leadership, but Dhumal’ grassroots appeal and acceptability among party workers apparently tipped the scale in his favour.
“Virbharda Singh keeps asking us under whose leadership the BJP is fighting the elections. In the whole country, the BJP is fighting under the leadership of Modiji. But if you want to hear under whose leadership the BJP is contesting in Himachal, then I want to make it clear today.

“Virbhadraji, the BJP is going to fight under Dhumalji’ leadership in Himachal. I want to say that we will fight these 2017 polls in the name of our senior leader Dhumalji. I also want to say that Dhumalji is currently a former Chief Minister and the Leader of the Opposition, but after December 18, he will become Himachal’s Chief Minister,” Amit Shah said. The State poll results would be declared on December 18.

Shah’s announcement was followed by lusty cheers from the party workers and members of the audience in the meeting. Dhumal had been spearheading the party’s campaign in the State since 1998 Assembly polls. He led it to victory in 1998 and 2007 but lost in 2003 and 2012.
Singh, who was again the Congress’ choice for the job, had been taking potshots at the BJP in his meetings due to its decision to not name a chief ministerial face, calling its campaign a “marriage party without a bridegroom.” The BJP and the Congress had been ruling the State alternately for close to three decades, and Dhumal was at its helm for 10 years.

The BJP had kept people guessing as to whether it would name a chief ministerial candidate before the polls.
Often it did not name a candidate, as seen in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Maharashtra, Haryana and Jharkhand among other States but it chose to name its choice in Assam, where it won, and Delhi, where it lost.

Dhumal has rich experience, will make ‘wonderful CM’ again, says PM: PRIME Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said Prem Kumar Dhumal, who was declared as BJP’s chief ministerial candidate, has rich administrative experience and will make a “wonderful CM” once again. Shortly after the announcement about Dhumal was made, Modi said the BJP wants to make Himachal Pradesh corruption- free and undertake record development in the state.