Congress leader Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu who took oath as the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh on Sunday said that his government will implement OPS (Old Pension Scheme) in the first cabinet meeting.
“We have given 10 guarantees and we will implement them. We will give transparent and honest government. We will implement OPS (Old Pension Scheme) in the first cabinet meeting,” Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu told ANI.
Earlier, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Friday said the Old Pension Scheme was the key to the party winning the Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections.
Addressing a press conference, Gehlot called OPS an ‘important issue for society’.
“Every person has the right to live. OPS helps people in drawing sufficient pensions in old age. I also urge the Centre to implement such beneficial schemes throughout the country,” he had said.
Sukhu, who climbed the political ladder up from the grassroots level in Himachal Pradesh, took oath as the 15th Chief Minister of the hill state at a ceremony in Shimla. Mukesh Agnihotri, former leader of the opposition, also took oath as the Deputy Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh. Governor RV Arlekar administered the oath of office to them at a formal function being organized at Ridge Maidan in Shimla on Sunday.
The swearing-in ceremony of the new government in Himachal Pradesh was attended by top leaders of Congress including President Mallikarjun Kharge, party leader Rahul Gandhi, and All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary Priyanka Gandhi.A loyalist of the Gandhi family, Sukhu is a four-time MLA (58) and former chief of Congress in the state.
Sukhu is known as an affable and approachable leader who has a vast network in the hill state due to his long years in the organisation. He also holds a broad organisational experience in the state owing to his connection with the grand old party for many years.
He was the party’s state unit president from 2013 to 2019 and spoke his mind even if it was not to the liking of the party’s tallest leader Virbhadra Singh, a six-time Chief Minister.
Sukhu has been in favour of promoting and grooming younger Congress leaders in Himachal Pradesh.
With Congress chief ministers over the past four decades coming from Rampur Bushahr, Congress central leadership was apparently keen to expand its choice.
Sukhu belongs to a middle-class family. He was active in politics from his student days and fought elections as an NSUI candidate. He was president of NSUI and the Indian Youth Congress in the state. He fought and won elections for Shimla Municipal Corporation. Sukhu won the assembly election for the first time in 2003 from Nadaun.
Sukhu was chairman of the Congress Campaign Committee for the assembly elections in which the party focused on local issues and made lucrative promises including an old age pension scheme.
Congress won the Assembly polls in the state, winning 40 seats.
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