The Gagret Assembly Constituency has Rajesh Thakur of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Chaitanya Sharma from the Indian National Congress (INC), and Manohar Dadwal of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) making it a three-way contest for this year’s Himachal Pradesh Assembly Elections. 

AICC secretary and former MLA Rakesh Kalia from Una district joined the BJP on October 25 in the presence of BJP president JP Nadda in Bilaspur, causing a major blow to the Congress. Kalia ran for a Congress ticket in the Gagret assembly and is a two-term MLA from the Chintpurni district. Kalia previously contested elections in the Gagret constituency in 2017 and 2012.

Himachal Pradesh has been an anti-incumbent state for a long time, with the BJP and Congress alternately ruling since 1985. This year, the Aam Aadmi Party hopes to change the political landscape in Himachal Pradesh.

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The BJP had won 44 of Himachal’s 68 assembly constituencies last time and the Congress had won 21. The CPI (M) had won one seat. A party needs to win 35 seats for a majority to form the government in the state.

In 2017, Rajesh Thakur of the BJP defeated Rakesh Kalia of the Congress by 9,329 votes. Lekh Raj Katnoria of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and an independent candidate Subhash Sharma also contested the 2017 election. 

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Gagret is one of the 68 assembly constituencies in Himachal Pradesh. Gagret falls under the Una district and Hamirpur Lok Sabha Constituency. Gagret has more than 82,000 eligible voters. 

 In 2012, Rakesh Kalia of the Congress defeated Sushil Kumar Kalia of the BJP by 4,897 votes. Gurbux Rai Thakur of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Vijay Kumar of Shivsena (SHS), Krishan Gopal of Himachal Swabhiman Party (HiSP), Shiv Kumar of All India Trinamool Congress (AITMC) and Narinder Singh Parmar of Himachal Lokhit Party (HLP) and independent candidates Lakshmi Jariyal, Ram Krishan Sandhu and Raman Kumar Jaswal also contested the HP Assembly Elections in 2012. 

Himachal Pradesh votes in a single round on November 12. Results will be announced on December 8.

Quick facts about the Gagret Assembly seat  

Name of the assembly constituency, district: Gagret, Una district

Polling date: November 12, 2022

Sitting MLA, party:  Rajesh Thakur, BJP

Key candidates, party in 2022: Manohar Dadwal (AAP), Rajesh Thakur (BJP), Chaitanya Sharma (INC)

Winning candidate, party in 2017:  Rajesh Thakur, BJP

Runner-up name, party 2017: Rakesh Kalia, INC

Winning margin in 2017: 9,320

Top 3 candidates 2017:  Rakesh Kalia (INC), Rajesh Thakur (BJP), Subhash Sharma (Independent)

Top 3 candidates 2012: Rakesh Kalia (INC), Sushil Kumar Kalia (BJP), Raman Kumar Jaswal (Independent)

Lok Sabha constituency: Hamirpur