Dharamshala is HP's second capital.

January 20, 2017

Times of India, 20 January 2017

DHARAMSHALA: Chief minister Virbhadra Singh on Thursday declared Dharamsala, situated in the snow-capped Dhauladhar range, the second capital of Himachal Pradesh. Making the announcement here in the evening, he said the town had a history of its own and fully deserved to be the second capital of the state.

Speaking to media persons here, he said Dharamshala was already marked prominently in the map of the world due to reasons including religious, natural and adventurous tourism and it being the home of His Holiness the Dalai Lama had attracted prominent personalities throughout the year.

The CM said a full-fledged winter session of HP assembly was held for the first time outside Shimla in December 2005. A complete assembly complex was already functional at Tapovan, for which the foundation was laid in his last tenure in 2006. Virbhadra claimed he had introduced the practice of annual winter sojourn way back in 1994 to see for himself the progress of development works being carried out in the area.

Cabinet minister and local MLA Sudhir Sharma expressed gratitude to the CM for the same on social media. “On behalf of all the people of Kangra, Chamba, Una and Hamirpur districts, I would like to thank you for making our city Dharamshala the winter capital of Himachal. It’s a proud moment for all the people of Himachal,” he said through his posts.

Minister for transport, technical education, food and civil supplies G S Bali later added another dimension to the move, by telling media persons here: “Elections are due in the state this year. By next winter, elections might be due in the state. So I shall request the CM to implement making the Dharamshala winter capital in February. All the secretaries and ministers should be made to sit in Dharamshala next month.”