After Gujarat, BJP makes a clean sweep in Himachal

December 28th, 2007 - 5:27 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Bahujan Samaj Party
Shimla/New Delhi, Dec 27 (ANI): After winning nearly two-third majority in Gujarat earlier this week, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday made a clean sweep in the Himachal Pradesh registering victories in 41-seats in the 68-member Assembly.
The saffron party has returned to power in the state after a gap of five years. This was the saffron party’s best performance in the state, and has increased its vote share by nearly 12 per cent.
The BJP has comfortably unseated the ruling Congress, which finished with just 23 seats.
The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has won one constituency. Independents have bagged three seats.
BJP leaders warned that the results in the two states showed that the Congress was bound to lose Lok Sabha elections in 2009.
BJP General Secretary Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi said the victories in Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat “are trailers of the Lok Sabha election.”
BJP leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy said, Himachal Pradesh would fuel the party’s resurgence at the national level.
Party president Rajnath Singh in New Delhi said: “I feel that the people of the nation believe that BJP is the only party that can do good to the nation. There are some issues like inflation, peace and other such things that we have addressed and hence have achieved success.”
The Congress downplayed its defeat in Himachal Pradesh, citing ‘anti-incumbency’ as the single largest factor that went against it.
The Congress said that it has accepted the result in Himachal Pradesh and there was no link in its defeat in the hill state with Gujarat election results.
“In democracy, changes do take place and we have to humbly accept the verdict of the people,” senior party leader and Minister of State for External Affairs Anand Sharma said, adding that there was no communal polarisation in the hill state which was witnessed in the western state.
Incumbent Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh retained Rohru in Shimla District winning by a margin of 14,000 votes.
BJP’s chief-ministerial candidate P K Dhumal won by 26,000 votes from Bamsan in Hamirpur District.
Dhumal is likely to take the oath of office on Sunday. He will become the chief minister of the state for the second time.
Dhumal said increasing prices of essential commodities, unemployment and corruption contributed to the voters going against the Congress party.
Counting of votes for all 68-assembly seats began early today morning.
The term of the 68-member State Assembly is till March 9, 2008. (ANI)

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