Himachal Cabinet – A Tough Task For Dhumal

Shimla: Faced with a difficult task of doing a balancing act about composition of the Himachal Cabinet, chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal inducts his cabinet colleagues at 10 a.m. on Wednesday at Raj Bhavan.

With central legislation having limited the cabinet size for small state like Himachal to 11, there are reports that the chief minister has desired to have a small cabinet. Governor VS Kokje with administer the oath of office and secrecy.

Though Dhumal and former chief minister Shanta Kumar did jointly deliberate with the party high command the composition, the hardest to decide upon is proving to be the Kangra district itself as most of the winners are old timers and it has become extremely difficult to choose among them.

While Kishan Kapoor, Ramesh Dhawala, and Rajan Sushant are front contenders for cabinet positions and then there are Shraveen Chaudhary and Ravinder Sinhg Ravi from the Dhumal camp who are under consideration.

Though of the 16 seats from Kangra, BJP has won 9 but given the cabinet limitations giving three berths to the district could lead to a lopsided imbalance which is bound to find repercussions elsewhere.

Besides Kangra, Mandi is another district where the contenders for a high table seat on the cabinet are bound to leave some disappointed. Of the seats won by BJP in the district, the seniors in the contention include Dhumal close relative Gulab Singh Thakur, former minister Roop Singh Thakur, Mohinder Singh as well state BJP president Jai Ram Thakur.

In Bilaspur, district the front contender is Jagat Prakash Nadda, but the others under consideration include Randhir Sharma and Rikhi Ram Kaundal.

In Solan the choice is between Hari Narain Singh and Rajeev Bindal. BJP for the first time has won all seats in Solan and Kullu district. In Kullu, Khimmi Ram is being projected as a possible minister.

In Shimla district the front name doing the rounds in Narinder Bragta, and Suresh Bhardwaj is also in the fray.

Ishawar Dass Dhiman who has been made the pro-term speaker could be inducted at a later date.

With too few seats on the cabinet available, the balancing task is bound to cause heartburns in many. However, with the party having a comfortable majority of 41 MLA’s in a house of 68, the ruling party is expected to tide over the initial hiccup of cabinet formation with not much difficulty.

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