Who will be Himachal Pradesh CM? Congress high command will select, MLAs decide
Rajeev Shukla announced that all 40 MLAs of the party have unanimously passed the proposal to leave the decision to select the chief minister of the state on the party's high command in New Delhi.
After the all-day drama, Congress Himachal Pradesh in-charge Rajeev Shukla, at a late evening press conference on Friday, announced that all 40 MLAs of the party have unanimously passed a resolution to leave the decision to select the chief minister of the state on the party's high command in New Delhi.
“All 40 MLAs took part in the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting today and all have unanimously passed the proposal to leave the decision to select the chief minister of Himachal Pradesh on the party high command,” Shukla said.
Shukla said the one-line resolution was passed unanimously and the party's observers – Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel and former CM of Haryana Bhupinder Singh Hooda – would submit their report to the party high command on Saturday.
Refuting there is factionalism within the Congress party as several leaders are lobbying for the chief minister's post, Shukla said no name came forward for the post of the legislature party leader and the MLAs unanimously decided that the party leadership would take the call.
The CLP meeting of newly elected Congress MLAs to discuss the appointment of the next Himachal Pradesh chief minister began in Shimla in the evening amid a show of strength by aspirants to the post.
Chief minister-hopefuls Pratibha Singh, Mukesh Agnihotri and Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu reached the party office for the meeting along with their supporters, who raised slogans in their favour.
The CLP meeting was scheduled to begin at 3pm but was delayed as several MLAs could not reach Shimla from far-away places earlier. The party's central observers also met the MLAs individually and sought their views on the matter.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge claimed he has contested 12 elections and won 11 of them, and he is well-conversed with the party procedures.
"We take the views of all and then the party will take a decision in whosoever is apt for the post of chief minister. All of them are competent. My observers will come and tell me about the opinion of new legislators," he said at the 'Agenda AajTak event'.
“It is not me but the elected MLAs who will decide their leader,” he said when asked whether he will take the final call on the chief ministerial candidate.
On Thursday, the Congress came out victorious in the assembly election in Himachal Pradesh by winning 40 seats, while the BJP could manage only 25 seats.
(With inputs from agencies)