Himachal Pradesh election 2017: Prem Kumar Dhumal, a two-time former Chief Minister of the state, is the BJP chief ministerial candidate for the upcoming polls in the state. Dhumal has worked with several units of the BJP for decades. He remained state secretary of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha in 1980-82; vice-president of BJYM in 1982-85; general secretary of state BJP in 1985-93, and state president of the party in 1993 –98. Dhumal beat JP Nadda to emerge as the CM candidate of BJP. Party sources told The Indian Express that “popularity and the acceptability among the cadre” played” in his favour.
Dhumal was first elected to Himachal Pradesh Assembly in 1998 and again in 2003. Dhumal served as the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh between 1998-2003 and the Leader of BJP Legislature Group from March 2003 to June 16, 2007. Dhumal was again elected to State Legislative Assembly in December 2007. He then resigned from Lok Sabha was sworn in again as Chief Minister on 30 December 2007.
Dhumal has been previously elected to Lok Sabha in 1989, 1991 and 2007 (by-election) from Hamirpur Parliamentary Constituency. He has served as Member several important panels of the Parliament like Consultative Committee, Ministry of Communication (1989-96); Standing Committee on Transport & Tourism (1991-96); Railway Convention Committee (1991-96). He was also a member of National Council for Teachers’ Education (1993-96) and remained an Alternate Chairman of the Estimates Committee of Lok Sabha between 1989-91.
Son of Mahant Ram and born on 10th April 1944 at village Samirpur in district Hamirpur of Himachal Pradesh, Dhumal completed MA and LLB from Doaba College, Jalandhar and Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar respectively. He is married to Sheela Dhumal and has two sons – one of them Anurag Thakur is a BJP Member of Parliament.
— ANI (@ANI) October 31, 2017
Dhumal is also a teacher and agriculturist. He has been associated with various social organizations such as Bharat Vikas Parishad, Vivekanand Memorial Society and Himachal Hitkarini Sabha.
Opinion polls have predicted a win for BJP, with Dhumal being the most preferred CM choice. He will fight against present CM and Congress candidate for the post, Virbhadra Singh.
The single-phase Himachal Pradesh election 2017 will be held on 9th November 2017. The counting of votes will be done on December 18, along with the Gujarat election.
At present, Congress has an upper-hand in Himachal assembly. It sits on 36 seats in the 68-member House, while BJP has 26. Congress candidate Virbhadra Singh has served as chief minister for six terms.