Indian Express

BJP wins all four Himachal seats, CM wife loses Mandi

Voters in the state broke the myth of voting for an incumbent government Tweet This
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BJP candidate Anurag Thakur celebrates with his father and former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal at Hamirpur on Friday. PTI BJP candidate Anurag Thakur celebrates with his father and former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal at Hamirpur on Friday. PTI

Creating history, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday swept all four Parliament constituencies in Himachal Pradesh including Mandi, defeating sitting MP and Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh’s wife Pratibha Singh. This is the first time Himachal voters have broken the myth of voting for an incumbent government.

The results came as a big blow for Virbhadra Singh and as a big victory for former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal — who had lost power to Virbhadra in 2012 Assembly polls. To add another blow to the Congress, the BJP wrested Sujanpur Assembly seat where Anita Rana, wife of Rajinder Rana who had vacated the seat ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, lost the bypoll by 538 votes.

Veteran BJP leader Shanta Kumar created history of sorts in Himachal by winning the Kangra seat by 1.70 lakh votes. He defeated former MP Chander Kumar, an OBC leader. Shanta Kumar got 5,56,213 votes.

BJP MP and Dhumal’s son Anurag Thakur defeated Congress’s Rajinder Rana by an impressive margin of 98,330 votes. The CM’s wife and two-time MP Pratibha Singh lost by 39,856 votes to Ram Swaroop Sharma of the BJP.

Shimla, considered a Congress bastion for decades, was demolished with sitting MP Virender Kashyap defeating first time MLA from Rohru, Mohan Lal Brakta, by 84,195 votes. The BJP won for the second consecutive time from the Congress bastion.

In the worst jolt to the Congress, Narinder Thakur, son of veteran BJP leader (late) Jagdev Chand, won the Sujanpur Assembly constituency with 22,993 votes. Thakur, earlier with the Congress, joined the BJP before the Lok Sabha elections.

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