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Politics in Himachal Pradesh

Himachal Pradesh is a state situated in the northern part of India. The Legislative Assembly of Himachal Pradesh does not have a pre-constitutional history as the state itself was formed after India gained its independence. The state was at first a centrally administered territory and attained statehood only in 1971, after a fifteen-year tenure as a Union Territory.

Like other states and UTs of the Indian union, the politics of Himachal Pradesh is characterized by parliamentary democracy, and the legislative arm of the government is manifested in the state legislature. The state has unicameral legislature which is known as Legislative Assembly or Vidhan Sabha. The Vidhan Sabha comprises of 68 members. Each MLA has an office term of five years, unless the assembly is dissolved before the completion of the term. The assembly meetings are presided over by the Speaker or the Deputy Speaker if the speaker is absent.

The judiciary of the state is comprised of Himachal Pradesh High Court and a system of the lower courts. The real executive authority rests with the Council of Ministers, headed by the Chief Minister of the state, although the Governor is the titular head of the state.

The leader of the party or coalition that enjoys a majority in the Legislative Assembly is appointed as the Chief Minister by the Governor, and the Council of Ministers also is appointed by the Governor on the Chief Minister's advice.

The last state legislative assembly election was won by the Indian National Congress and Vibhadra Singh is the present Chief Minister of the state. The main opposition is the Bhartiya Janata Party. Besides Congress and BJP, no other party has had significant presence in the politics of Himachal Pradesh. The state has four Lok Sabha constituencies. They are Shimla, Mandi, Kangra and Hamirpur.

The state of HImachal Pradesh is demarcated into 12 districts. Each of the districts is an administrative geographical unit, which is being headed by the Deputy Commissioner or the District Magistrate.

Last Updated On: 2011/07/06