Chhattisgarh Congress chief Bhupesh Baghel was on Sunday decalred the new chief minister of state after days of intense deliberations with top party leadership headed by Rahul Gandhi. He will take oath on Monday.
The announcement was made by the Congress on its official Twitter handle even when the meeting of the Legislature Party was on in Raipur.
Chhattisgarh: Visuals from the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting in Raipur. pic.twitter.com/LdQTLog6nt— ANI (@ANI) December 16, 2018
The party also announced that the new Congress government in the state would work on equality, transparency and integrity and its first task would be to declare a loan waiver for farmers of the state.
"Celebrations are in order in Chhattisgarh as Bhupesh Baghel is appointed CM. We wish him the best as he forms a government of equality, transparency and integrity starting off with loan waiver for farmers as we promised," the party tweeted, along with a picture of Baghel.
Top party leadership have had intense discussions over the past three days before deciding on Baghel as the chief minister.
The OBC leader, who steered the party to a stupendous victory with a two-thirds majority in Chhattisgarh pipped party colleagues T S Singh Deo, Tamradhwaj Sahu and Charan Das Mahant for the top post, as Gandhi selected him to lead the state government.
Gandhi held several rounds of discussion since morning with the four aspirants for the post--T S Singh Deo, Tamradhwaj Sahu, Bhupesh Baghel and Charan Das Mahant--at his Tughlaq Lane residence.
The party sources said UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra were also present at the Congress chief's residence.
Congress central observer Mallikarjun Kharge and AICC in-charge for party affairs in Chhattisgarh P L Punia were also present at the meeting.
Sources said the process of consultation on who will be the next chief minister of Chhattisgarh was marked by flip-flop throughout the day.
They said an official announcement in this regard is expected on Sunday and a possible swearing-in will take place on Monday.
T S Singh Deo on being asked if he'll be announced as #Chhattisgarh Chief Minister: Aap Chhattisgarh ki government mein Chhattisgarh ke liye kaam karne wale ek saathi se baat kar rahe hain. 12:30 baje vidhayak dal ki baithak hai, tab CM ka naam announce ho jayega. pic.twitter.com/PVc3VuHrun— ANI (@ANI) December 16, 2018
Meanwhile, the Congress president tweeted a smiling picture of all the four aspirants for the Chhattisgarh CM's post along with a quote by Reid Hoffman.
"No matter how brilliant your mind or strategy, if you’re playing a solo game, you’ll always lose out to a team. - Reid Hoffman," he tweeted.
No matter how brilliant your mind or strategy, if you’re playing a solo game, you’ll always lose out to a team.— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) December 15, 2018
– Reid Hoffman pic.twitter.com/TL5rPwiCDX
Party sources said the Congress was also toying with the idea of having a CM and a deputy CM, and also mulling division of the CM term to accommodate more leaders.
Congress had romped home to power in Chhattisgarh after 15 years with a two-third majority.
The Congress had on Friday named Ashok Gehlot Rajasthan's next chief minister after several rounds of discussions lasting more than two days. In Madhya Pradesh, Congress leader Kamal Nath was announced as chief minister-designate on December 13.
(With inputs from agencies)