BJP's Dhumal is Himachal CM, to prove majority by April 3
A nine-member Bharatiya Janata Party-Himachal
Vikas Congress ministry, headed by Prem Kumar Dhumal, was sworn in
by Governor V S Rama Devi on the Raj Bhavan lawns in Shimla today, ending a 12-day political deadlock in the state.
Rama Devi said she had asked Dhumal to prove his majority
on the floor of the assembly by April 3.
Besides Dhumal, those who took the oath as
cabinet ministers were former Union communication minister Sukh Ram
and Mohinder Singh (both of the HVC),
Kishori Lal Vaidya, J P Nadda, Mansa Ram and Kishan Kapoor.
Ramesh Chand Choudhary, an Independent MLA who last night
resigned from the earlier Virbhadra Singh government as minister of
irrigation and public health, was also sworn in as a cabinet minister
in the new ministry.
Prakash Choudhary took the oath as a minister of state.
Among those present on the occasion were Bharatiya Janata Party
general secretary Narendra Modi, Punjab Minister Madan Mohan Mittal, a
large number of BJP workers and high civil and police officers.
The swearing-in ceremony, that traditionally takes place in the
Darbar Hall of the Raj Bhavan, was held on the lawns due to surging
crowds of BJP supporters at the venue.
With Ramesh Chand Choudhary's support, the
strength of the BJP-HVC combine has risen to 33 while the Congress
has 31 members in the 68-member House that has an effective strength
of 64 members.
Elections in the three tribal assembly segments of Bharmour,
Lahaul Kinnaur and Spiti and the by-election for the
Paragpur seat have been rescheduled for June 3 by the Election
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