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Pema Khandu named as next Arunachal Pradesh CM

Khandu has been re-elected as the Leader of the BJP Legislative Party unopposed

Reported by:  PTC News Desk  Edited by:  Jasleen Kaur -- June 12th 2024 07:09 PM -- Updated: June 12th 2024 08:11 PM
Pema Khandu named as next Arunachal Pradesh CM

Pema Khandu named as next Arunachal Pradesh CM

Itanagar, June 12:  Pema Khandu has been re-elected as the leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislature party in Arunachal Pradesh, paving the way for his third consecutive term as the Chief Minister. This decision came just 10 days after the Assembly election results were declared on June 2.

Pema Khandu was elected unanimously during a meeting held in the state capital, Itanagar, attended by BJP central observers and senior party leaders.

Expressing his gratitude in two posts on X (formerly Twitter), Khandu thanked the lawmakers for their continued support. "Feeling so honoured to be elected unanimously as the Legislature Party leader of Arunachal Pradesh BJP. With utmost humility, I accept the responsibility of leading the BJP to another term of development-oriented governance in sync with the vision of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modiji," he wrote. 

In a subsequent post, he added, "I am grateful to our fellow BJP MLAs for placing their faith in me. I also put on record my sincere thanks to our MPs, party leaders, and workers for working day in and day out in ensuring a resounding win in the polls. Now, let’s work together harder to further speed up the pace of all-round growth in Arunachal Pradesh and realize the goal of inclusive Viksit Bharat by 2047."

The meeting saw the presence of BJP central observers Ravi Shankar Prasad, an MP from Bihar, and Tarun Chugh, the party’s national general secretary. Union minister Kiren Rijiju, re-elected from the Arunachal West Lok Sabha seat, was also present.

BJP state spokesperson Techi Necha made the formal announcement of Khandu’s election. "The newly elected BJP MLAs of the state have elected Pema Khandu as their legislature party leader in the meeting held at Itanagar. The swearing-in ceremony of the new cabinet will take place on Thursday at 11 am," Necha stated.

Following this, Khandu is expected to meet Governor KT Parnaik to stake his claim to form the next government. The swearing-in ceremony for the new council of ministers is scheduled for Thursday morning. Prominent BJP leaders, including national president JP Nadda, union home minister Amit Shah, and national general secretary (organisation) BL Santosh, are expected to attend the ceremony.

Khandu’s political journey has been notable. He first took office as Chief Minister in July 2016, leading a Congress government. Shortly after, he and nearly all Congress MLAs switched to the Peoples’ Party of Arunachal (PPA) and formed a new government. However, after being expelled from the PPA, Khandu and his supporters joined the BJP in December 2016, marking his third oath-taking within a year. He began his second term as BJP Chief Minister on May 29, 2019, after the BJP secured 41 out of 60 seats in the assembly elections. This time, the BJP improved its tally, winning 46 of the 60 seats.

The National Peoples’ Party (NPP), a constituent of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) at the Centre, emerged as the second-largest party with 5 seats. The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) won 3 seats, the Peoples’ Party of Arunachal (PPA) secured 2 seats, the Congress won 1 seat, and 3 seats were won by Independent candidates.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, convener of the North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), is also expected at the swearing-in ceremony. Chief Ministers from other BJP-ruled states, including Tripura and Manipur, as well as states where BJP is part of the ruling coalition, such as Nagaland and Meghalaya, are likely to attend.

Although the NPP offered support to the new BJP government, its inclusion in the cabinet seems unlikely. "We have offered support to the new BJP government in Arunachal Pradesh as our party is part of NDA at the Centre. But it’s unlikely that any of the 5 MLAs from NPP will be included in the new cabinet as the BJP has an absolute majority on its own," said Rungri Nabam, president of the Arunachal Pradesh unit of NPP.

- With inputs from agencies

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