Prem Kumar Dhumal meets Prime Minister

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar DhumalNew Delhi, Dec 31: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal met Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh here today.

This is Dhumal’s first visit to the Capital after being sworn-in as the sixteenth Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh on December 30.

Dhumal, a three-time MLA, had earlier headed the BJP Government from 1998-2003. He is said to be the first Chief Minister, who was administered the oath of the Chief Minister's (CM) office at a public ceremony.

Dhumal won from Bamsan in Hamirpur district, defeating Congress candidate Col (R) BC Lagwal by 26,000 votes.

After winning nearly two-third seats in Gujarat earlier this week, the BJP scored a comfortable victory in the state, bagging 41 seats in the 68-member Assembly.

The party has returned to power in the state after a gap of five years. This was its best performance in the state, with having increased its vote share by nearly 12 per cent.

On the other hand, the Congress won 23 seats and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) won one seat. Independents bagged the remaining three seats.

Incumbent Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh retained Rohru in Shimla District winning by a margin of 14,000 votes.

The term of the 68-member State Assembly is to end on March 9, 2008. (ANI)