Updated: December 18, 2017 12:22:43 pm
As Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) inches towards victory in Himachal Pradesh, Congress party’s stalwarts are biting the dust with a cabinet minister already declared defeated and four cabinet ministers trailing behind their rivals.
The four ministers include Forest Minister Thakur Singh Bharmauri trailing behind BJP’s Jia Lal by a margin of 1317 votes from Bharmour in Chamba till the filing of this report at 12.12 pm. Another Congress stalwart and cabinet minister Kaul Singh Thakur, who is contesting his ninth election and was a contender for CM’s post is trailing behind BJP candidate Jawahar Thakur by 1872 votes. Agriculture Minister Sujan Singh Pathania from Fatehpur is behind Independent candidate Baldev Thakur and is placed at number three.
Urban Development Minister Sudhir Sharma is trailing behind BJP’s Kishan Kapoor by a margin of 1691 votes. He was banking on the Tibetan votes that he was instrumental in getting registered. Tibetans as voters exercised their franchise for the first time in the Assembly elections. Excise and Taxation Minister Parkash Chaudhary has already been declared defeated.
Transport Minister GS Bali, who is a bete noire of Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh was trailing since morning but picked up as the day progressed. He was leading by a margin of 1000 votes from his nearest rival of BJP Arun Kumar. Industries Minister Mukesh Agnihotri is also leading from Haroli by 4288 votes at the time this report was filed. Sainik Welfare Minister Dr Dhani Ram Shandil is leading from Solan with a narrow margin of 261 votes from BJP rival Rakesh Kashyap.
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh is leading by a margin of 4500 votes from Arki. Rural Development and Panchayat Minister Anil Kumar, who defected to BJP before elections is leading from Mandi by 9000 votes against Kaul Singh Thakur’s daughter Champa Thakur.
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