Vijay Rupani's swearing-in ceremony will take place in Gandhinagar on December 26.
A big day for Vijay Rupani on Tuesday. The day when the incumbent Chief Minister will be sworn in for the top post for the second time. His swearing-in ceremony will take place in Gandhinagar on December 26. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and chief ministers of 18 BJP-ruled states have been invited to the ceremony.
State BJP leaders met Governor OP Kohli today and staked claim to form government. The party secured a simple majority in the elections by winning 99 seats in the 182-member Assembly. “The governor accepted our claim and asked us to form government, after which we sought time on December 26 for the swearing-in ceremony,” state BJP chief Jitu Vaghani told reporters in Gandhinagar. The ceremony will be held at the Sachivalya Grounds in Gandhinagar, Vaghani added. The Sachivalaya Ground venue for the oath-taking was decided by the party after visiting Sardar Patel stadium and Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad and Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar. Vaghani did not reveal how many ministers will take oath along with chief minister Rupani and deputy chief minister Nitin Patel. Rupani and Patel were elected as leader and deputy leader of the BJP legislative party on December 22 in the presence of central observers finance minister Arun Jaitley and party general secretary Saroj Pandey.
Though the BJP retained power in the key western state for a record sixth straight term, there was speculation over whether Rupani would continue to hold the post given the party’s narrow victory. The BJP won 99 seats in the 182-member Assembly, the first time its tally slipped below hundred since 1995, while challenger Congress clocked its best in many years, clinching 77. Rupani’s proximity to the top party leadership, his clean and caste-neutral image apparently tilted the scales in his favour. Rupani was made the chief minister in August last year after his predecessor Anandiben Patel resigned in the wake of the growing Dalit unrest in the state after the Una flogging incident a month before, and the Patidar quota agitation, which had begun on a violent note in 2015. Rupani, who successfully staved off a spirited challenge from the Congress, overcoming the incumbency factor, farm distress, angst and anger over demonetisation and GST in the state with a large population of traders, will have to show his political sinews and sagacity when Narendra Modi bids for a second shot at power in 2019.