Election results: PM Modi, Amit Shah flashed victory sign after BJP won a 5th term in Gujarat
After the BJP emerged victorious in the assembly elections by defeating the Congress in both Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat, the party is now mulling decision on chief ministers for these states. As the party's presumptive state chief for Himachal Pradesh, PK Dhumal lost his seat in the polls, speculations are rife as to who the next chief minister of the state would be. During the Gujarat election campaign, Amit Shah had said that incumbent chief minister Vijay Rupani was the party's face in the state. The BJP has decided to send two teams headed by Arun Jaitley and Nirmala Sitharaman to Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat as observers. Here are the updates for decision on chief ministers for Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh:
'Kaun Banega Chief Minister,' Now Showing in Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh: 10 Facts
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman leads a central team of BJP leaders today to Himachal Pradesh, where they will meet the party's 44 newly-elected legislators. Ms Sitharaman will oversee the process of picking a chief minister after a peculiar problem cropped up for the party. It swept the election, but its chief ministerial candidate PK Dhumal lost. He remains in the race though, with his loyalists offering their newly won seats to him. In Gujarat, where the BJP has won a sixth straight term, outgoing Chief Minister Vijay Rupani is seen as the favourite, but there are other factors.
BJP could opt for a Thakur leader in Himachal Pradesh, say party sources
Although JP Nadda and five-term MLA Jairam Thakur are being seen as frontrunners for the chief minister's post on Himachal Pradesh, BJP sources have said that the party could also opt for a Thakur leader, the dominant community in the hill state. Mr Nadda is a Brahmin.
The BJP could also opt for a Patel or Patidar chief minister like outgoing deputy CM Nitin Patel, to assuage the influential community.
Vijay Rupani is considered a stable, caste neutral choice for the party. Mr Rupani is known to have a clean image and is also seen as close to party chief Amit Shah who had said while campaigning that Mr Rupani was the party's choice for CM.
Vijay Rupani Frontrunner For Gujarat Chief Minister, But Not Default Choice
Vijay Rupani, outgoing Gujarat chief minister is seen as the favourite for the top post, but the BJP's performance in the assembly elections has thrown open the possibility of the party opting for someone else. As the state BJP waits for the arrival from Delhi of union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who will oversee the selection of the next chief minister, the only consensus is that it is anyone's guess.
Nadda's proximity to the party top brass is seen as a big plus for him. However, some party leaders believe that the BJP's central leadership may finally choose the chief minister from among lawmakers.
JP Nadda front-runner for Himachal Pradesh CM's post
J P Nadda and lawmaker Jairam Thakur are being seen as front- runners for the CM's post in Himachal Pradesh, while incumbent Vijay Rupani is the favourite in Gujarat. However, speculation continues over his fate after the BJP's subdued performance.