BJP’s chief ministerial face for the Himachal Pradesh polls, Prem Kumar Dhumal, was defeated yesterday from the Sujanpur Assembly seat. The former chief minister lost to his Congress rival Rajinder Singh Rana by 1,919 votes, according to the Election Commission. Dhumal got 23,369 votes against 25,228 votes polled by Rana. Earlier reports had said Dhumal’s margin of defeat was about 3,500 votes but the Election Commission late night put out the votes polled in the constituency, showing that he had lost by 1,919 votes. Dhumal accepted his defeat and said that the result was unexpected and the party would do introspection. He congratulated the winners and party workers for the spectacular victory in the state polls. Meanwhile, Varinder Kanwar, who won from Kutlehar in Una district, offered to vacate his seat for Dhumal. From the Jogindernagar seat, whose result was also pending and was announced late in the night, Independent candidate Prakash Rana defeated BJP’s Gulab Singh Thakur by 6,635 votes. Rana got 31,214 votes against the 24,517 votes polled by Gulab Singh. With this, all the results have been declared and the final tally in Himachal Pradesh stood at — BJP 44, Congress 21, CPI(M) 1 and Independents 2.
(More details are awaited.)