Pushkar Singh Dhami on Wednesday took oath as the chief minister of Uttarakhand. The swearing-in ceremony was held at Parade Ground in Dehradun.

Along with Dhami, eight ministers were also sworn in. Of these, Satpal Maharaj, Subodh Uniyal, Dhan Singh Rawat, Rekha Arya, Ganesh Josh took oath for the second straight term, while Chandan Ram Das, Saurabh Bahuguna, Prem Chand Aggarwal are the new faces in the Uttarakhand Cabinet, NDTV reported.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari were among those who attended the ceremony.

Ahead of taking oath as the chief minister, the Bharatiya Janata Party leader offered prayers at Tapkeshwar Mahadev temple in Dehradun. He said on Twitter that he prayed for the prosperity of all the people of the state.

“People of the state gave us a two-thirds majority and today our government is officially going to be formed,” Dhami said, ANI reported. “May god remove all obstacles and our state may further progress.”

Assembly polls

In the recently-concluded Assembly polls in Uttarakhand, Dhami lost from the Khatima constituency. He was defeated by Congress candidate Bhuwan Chandra Kapri by a margin of 6,579 votes.

Credit: Election Commission of India

But, the BJP won 47 seats in the 70-member Assembly. The BJP’s decision to retain Dhami as the chief minister means he would have to get elected in a bye-poll within six months of taking oath. He would be contesting a seat that one of the elected BJP MLAs would vacate.

Dhami, who is a son of an ex-serviceman, had won twice from the Khatima constituency previously, ANI reported.

Dhami’s pre-poll promise

After the legislature party meeting held on Monday in Dehradun, the BJP elected Dhami as the leader of the legislature party in Uttarakhand.

Soon after the announcement, Dhami said that he will fulfil all pre-poll commitments in the state.

Ahead of the Assembly elections in Uttarakhand, Dhami had promised that if voted to power, the BJP would form a panel to prepare draft for Uniform Civil Code. After the BJP named him as the chief minister for another term, Dhami reiterated the commitment.

A uniform civil code involves having a common set of laws governing marriage, divorce, succession and adoption for all Indians, instead of allowing different personal laws for people of different faiths.