New Delhi: Congress on Sunday announced Bhupesh Baghel as the next Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh. The announcement was made during the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting in Raipur. The party wished Baghel on its official Twitter account. The tweet reads, “Celebrations are in order in Chhattisgarh as Bhupesh_Baghel is appointed CM. We wish him the best as he forms a govt. of equality, transparency and integrity starting off with farm loan waiver for farmers as we promised.” Also Read - Chhattisgarh Constable Arrested For Inflicting Cigarette Burns on Toddler, Thrashing Woman

Addressing the press conference, All India Congress Committee’s observer for Chhattisgarh, Mallikarjun Kharge said, “Oath ceremony will be held in Raipur tomorrow for only the Chhattisgarh Chief Minister. The decision on rest of the cabinet will be taken later.” Also Read - Lockdown Latest News: Total Shutdown to be Imposed in 10 Districts of This State; Capital City Identified as Containment Zone

The announcement came five days after the assembly election results. Top contenders for the post were– Bhupesh Baghel, TS Singh Deo, Charan Das Mahant and Tamradhwaj Sahu. Rahul Gandhi has been holding hectic parleys with top leaders to decide on the top post for the state, where the party romped home to power after 15 years with two-third majority in the recently concluded Assembly Elections 2018. Also Read - Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel Goes Into Self-isolation After Staff Members Test COVID Positive

Baghel will be the third Chief Minister of the state. He represent Patan Assembly constituency in Durg district. Baghel has been the President of Chhattisgarh Congress since October 2014. He is a former state minister and a former deputy leader of the Congress Legislature Party during the first tenure of BJP from 2003-2008. He was recently arrested by the CBI for allegedly distributing a “fake sleaze video” featuring a BJP state minister. Baghel is currently out on bail.

Before selecting the chief minister for Chhattisgarh, Gandhi had met the four potential candidates for the post on Saturday at his Tughlaq Lane residence and held discussions with them. Congress’ central observer Mallikarjun Kharge and AICC in-charge for party affairs in Chhattisgarh P L Punia were also present at the meeting. UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra were also present at the Congress chief’s residence, reports said.

The Congress won 68 of the 90 seats in the Chhattisgarh Assembly Election 2018, ousting Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Raman Singh from power. The saffron party could manage to only bag 15 seats.

On Friday, the Congress named Ashok Gehlot as chief minister of Rajasthan, where the party which won 99 seats has received the support of Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) to reach the majority mark of 100. In Madhya Pradesh, Congress leader Kamal Nath was made chief minister-designate on December 13. The party emerged victorious on 114 seats, two short of the magic figure but got the support by Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Samajwadi Party (SP) in the state.