Chhattisgarh CM to be named today
TS Baba from the erstwhile royal family of Sarguja, and PCC president Bhupesh Baghel, elected from Patan and OBC leader, are front runners.
Ambikapur MLA Anurag Singh Deo,popularly known as TS Baba from the erstwhile royal family of Sarguja, and PCC president Bhupesh Baghel, elected from Patan and OBC leader, are front runners. Apart from them, those who attended Gandhi’s Friday afternoon deliberations included the other two aspirants, Charan Das Mahant and Tamradhwaj Sahu, central observer Mallikarjun Kharge and state incharge PL Punia.
A sizeable section of MLAs are learnt to have pitched for Deo during consultations Kharge had with the newlyelected MLAs and also in the simultaneous exercise Rahul Gandhi carried out directly through Shakti App. Kharge had submitted his report to Rahul Gandhi on Thursday. A section of Chhattisgarh MLAs are believed have pitched for Deo for his clean image, for being articulate and ability to take different sections along. Congress would have to immediately hit the ground to prepare for the Lok Sabha elections which are around the corner. Baghel, credited with infusing fresh blood in the organisation ahead of polls, has his share of controversies.
Congress sources said in case of a tie, Durg (rural) MLA Sahu could emerge as the dark horse. Sahu, who also is an MP from Durg and chairman of the party's Other Backward Classes cell, is believed to have jumped into the fray at the last moment on the directions of the Congress brass. During Friday's deliberations, all four MLAs said that they had left the decision to Gandhi to pick anyone of them, according to a Congress insider. Though the meeting was scheduled for Friday morning, it was postponed due to flight delay.
The Congress swept the polls pulling down the BJP regime of 15 years, bagging 68 seats while BJP was reduced to 15 seats and former chief minister Ajit Jogi-led alliance won 7 seats in the 90-member assembly. After announcing the name of the CM, the high command will also have to pick 12 ministers for the Chhattisgarh cabinet.