Chhattisgarh likely to get new CM in next 2 days
December 08, 2023  21:12
The meeting of the Bharatiya Janata Party's newly elected 54 MLAs in Chhattisgarh to elect the leader of its legislative party, who would become the next chief minister, would take place on Saturday or Sunday, sources said in Raipur.

The suspense over who would be the chief minister continues as the saffron party had not declared its chief ministerial candidate prior to the last month's assembly elections.

The BJP, which ousted the Congress from power, on Friday appointed Union ministers Arjun Munda and Sarbananda Sonowal alongwith party general secretary Dushyant Kumar Gautam as observers for the  election of the leader of the legislative party in Chhattisgarh.

While the BJP won 54 of the 90 seats, the Congress, which had won 68 seats in 2018, was reduced to 35 seats.  The Gondwana Gantantra Party (GGP) managed to win one seat.

The meeting of the BJP MLAs will take place soon, former chief minister and the party's vice president Raman Singh told reporters.

Another senior leader said that the observers were likely to reach Raipur on Saturday, following which the meeting to elect the legislative party leader could take place on the same evening, or on Sunday.

It is being speculated that the BJP would go for an OBC or a tribal chief minister.

Former Union minister Vishnu Deo, Renuka Singh who resigned as Union Minister after being elected as an MLA, former state ministers Ramvichar Netam and Lata Usendi, and Gomti Sai who resigned as an MP after being elected to the assembly are being seen as among the contenders.

Tribal communities account for 32 percent of the state's population, and the BJP won 17 of the 29 seats reserved for the Scheduled Tribes (ST) this time.

One tribal candidate of the party also won from the unreserved  Premnagar seat in Surajpur district. Notably, the BJP had won only three seats reserved for the tribals in 2018.

The BJP swept the tribal-dominated Surguja division -- the Congress had won all 14 seats in the division in 2018 -- which is being seen as the key to its victory in the state. Vishnudeo Sai, Renuka Singh, Ramvichar Netam and Gomti Sai hail from this division.

State BJP chief Arun Sao, who too resigned as an MP after being elected as an MLA, and bureaucrat-turned-politician O P Choudhary, both from Other Backward Classes,  are also among the contenders for the CM's post.

Sao hails from the influential Sahu (Teli) community which has a sizable presence in Durg, Raipur and Bilaspur divisions. The OBCs account for around 45 percent of the state's population.   -- PTI
« Back to LIVE