Gaurav Bisht

Gaurav Bisht heads Hindustan Times’ Himachal bureau. He covers politics in the hill state and other issues concerning the masses.

Articles by Gaurav Bisht

HP Police recruitment paper leak: Interstate gang behind paper leak, SIT expands probe

With the mastermind of the constable recruitment paper leak still on the run, the special investigation team has directed superintendents of police of all districts to interrogate candidates who scored over 65 marks in the qualifying examination.
Around 500 candidates have already been interrogated, and 20 people, including the applicants, their parents and agents of the gang who brokered the deals, have been arrested so far. (HT PHOTO )
Around 500 candidates have already been interrogated, and 20 people, including the applicants, their parents and agents of the gang who brokered the deals, have been arrested so far. (HT PHOTO )
Published on May 17, 2022 02:28 AM IST
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ByGaurav Bisht/Naresh K Thakur, Shimla/dharamshala

IAF helicopters help bring Kasauli forest fire under control

Firefighters from Solan and Parwanoo in Himachal Pradesh struggle to douse blaze as tourist town gets engulfed in smoke with dry pine needles catching fire and windy conditions accelerating the spread
The tourist town of Kasauli in Solan district of Himachal Pradesh was engulfed in a plume of thick smoke billowing from the forest throughout Sunday as dry pine needles caught fire. (HT Photo)
The tourist town of Kasauli in Solan district of Himachal Pradesh was engulfed in a plume of thick smoke billowing from the forest throughout Sunday as dry pine needles caught fire. (HT Photo)
Updated on May 16, 2022 12:34 PM IST
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ByGaurav Bisht and Tanbir Dhaliwal

Spiti valley’s young eco-warriors wage war on plastic waste

With heaps of plastic waste blemishing the once pristine Spiti valley, a battalion of young eco-warriors is transforming these non-biodegradable eyesores into avant-garde poly bricks
They gather and stuff the non-biodegradable pollutants into empty plastic bottles, which are reused as poly bricks. (HT Photo)
They gather and stuff the non-biodegradable pollutants into empty plastic bottles, which are reused as poly bricks. (HT Photo)
Published on May 15, 2022 03:54 AM IST
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By, Shimla

BJP going full throttle to revitalise its cadres in HP

BJP’s top brass have taken charge of gearing up its cadres in the state where the voters change government after every five years
BJP national president JP Nadda interacting with party workers in Kullu on Saturday. (Aqil Khan /Hindustan Times)
BJP national president JP Nadda interacting with party workers in Kullu on Saturday. (Aqil Khan /Hindustan Times)
Updated on May 15, 2022 03:50 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Police recruitment paper leak questions credibility of HP govt exams

The constable recruitment question paper was leaked much before March and sold for 6 lakh to 8 lakh to more than 200 youngsters, the number could go up as the SIT expands investigation
Police personnel try to bring situation under control during a protest of NSUI members against Himachal chief minister Jai Ram Thakur over paper leak. (PTI file photo)
Police personnel try to bring situation under control during a protest of NSUI members against Himachal chief minister Jai Ram Thakur over paper leak. (PTI file photo)
Published on May 13, 2022 04:25 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Sukh Ram | Chanakya of Himachal politics always dreamt of becoming CM

Sukh Ram was credited with bringing telephones to every nook and cranny of hill state. However, the scandal associated with it left a lasting taint on him.
In the 2003 assembly elections, Sukh Ram’s Himachal Vikas Congress managed to get only one seat, which he won in Mandi. (HT File)
In the 2003 assembly elections, Sukh Ram’s Himachal Vikas Congress managed to get only one seat, which he won in Mandi. (HT File)
Published on May 12, 2022 02:14 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Himachal Pradesh govt cancels police constable recruitment exam

Special investigation team (SIT) led by deputy inspector general of police Madhusudan will probe the paper leak, while three candidates and a private institute employee have been arrested; exam to be conducted again by May-end
As many as 75,803 candidates had appeared in the hour-long exam held at 81 centres across 11 districts of Himachal Pradesh to recruit 1,700 constables on March 27, the result of which was declared on April 5. (HT file photo)
As many as 75,803 candidates had appeared in the hour-long exam held at 81 centres across 11 districts of Himachal Pradesh to recruit 1,700 constables on March 27, the result of which was declared on April 5. (HT file photo)
Updated on May 06, 2022 05:02 PM IST
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ByGaurav Bisht and Naresh K Thakur

Congress leaders put up a united show at Shimla rally

All India Congress Committee in-charge of Himachal affairs Rajeev Shukla made it clear to the state leaders that personal interests were subservient to the larger interests of the Congress
Congress’ newly appointed Himachal chief Pratibha Singh, state affairs in-charge Rajiv Shukla, former president Kuldeep Rathore and CLP leader Mukesh Agnihotri among others during a rally in Shimla on Thursday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Congress’ newly appointed Himachal chief Pratibha Singh, state affairs in-charge Rajiv Shukla, former president Kuldeep Rathore and CLP leader Mukesh Agnihotri among others during a rally in Shimla on Thursday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Published on May 06, 2022 03:48 AM IST
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By, Shimla

It will be a direct fight between Congress & BJP in Himachal: Sukhu

Congress’ newly appointed Himachal campaign panel head Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu their party will get a thumping majority in the Shimla municipal corporation elections
Congress’ newly appointed HP campaign panel head Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu being welcomed in Shimla on Wednesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Congress’ newly appointed HP campaign panel head Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu being welcomed in Shimla on Wednesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Published on May 05, 2022 03:03 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Power surplus Himachal faces outages

At a time when many states are facing an electricity crisis, power surplus Himachal too is facing power outages. Scanty rainfall and slow thawing of glaciers have impacted hydropower generation in state
Himachal, which being a power surplus state used to sell electricity to other states during peak production months, is now buying power in exchange at a rate of <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>12 per unit. (HT Photo/ Representational image)
Himachal, which being a power surplus state used to sell electricity to other states during peak production months, is now buying power in exchange at a rate of 12 per unit. (HT Photo/ Representational image)
Published on May 04, 2022 12:45 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Himachal Congress chief Pratibha Singh returns to Shimla, gets raucous reception

Sixty-six-year-old Pratibha Singh, the widow of former six-term chief minister Virbhadra Singh, will formally assume office of Himachal Congress chief on May 5
Newly-appointed Himachal Congress chief Pratibha Singh and her son and MLA Vikramaditya Singh during a roadshow from Parwanoo to Shimla on Monday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Newly-appointed Himachal Congress chief Pratibha Singh and her son and MLA Vikramaditya Singh during a roadshow from Parwanoo to Shimla on Monday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Updated on May 03, 2022 01:51 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Congress to hold public rally in Shimla on May 5

Congress’ newly appointed Himachal chief Pratibha Singh on Saturday called on AICC’s interim president Sonia Gandhi in New Delhi
Congress’ newly appointed Himachal chief Pratibha Singh will also assume office on May 5. (Image for representational purpose)
Congress’ newly appointed Himachal chief Pratibha Singh will also assume office on May 5. (Image for representational purpose)
Published on May 01, 2022 02:28 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Tourists ditch Himachal, make a beeline for Kashmir, Uttarakhand

Tourist footfall in Himachal has drastically dropped as compared to pre-Covid years despite an influx of visitors during the weekends. Tourists are rushing to more attractive locales in Kashmir and Uttarakhand
This year, there is a drastic decline in tourist arrival from Gujarat, Maharashtra and West Bengal, who otherwise flock to Himachal in hoards. Tourists from these states are now preferring to visit Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand. (HT File Photo)
This year, there is a drastic decline in tourist arrival from Gujarat, Maharashtra and West Bengal, who otherwise flock to Himachal in hoards. Tourists from these states are now preferring to visit Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand. (HT File Photo)
Updated on Apr 30, 2022 01:58 AM IST
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By, Shimla

A daunting task ahead for Himachal Congress chief Pratibha

Himachal Congress chief Pratibha faces challenge of uniting the faction-ridden state unit and countering the ‘well-organised’ BJP in the upcoming assembly polls
New Himachal PCC chief Pratibha Singh offers sweets to her son Vikramaditya Singh in Shimla on Wednesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
New Himachal PCC chief Pratibha Singh offers sweets to her son Vikramaditya Singh in Shimla on Wednesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Published on Apr 28, 2022 02:11 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Forest fires rage in Himachal, 503 incidents in nearly 4 weeks

The ongoing dry spell in Himachal Pradesh has not only caused extensive damage to crops, but also triggered raging fires across forest areas in the hill state, particularly cheer pines in the mid belt
Smoke billowing out of a forest near Shimla where a fire broke out on Tuesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Smoke billowing out of a forest near Shimla where a fire broke out on Tuesday. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Published on Apr 27, 2022 01:11 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Former six-time CM’s wife Pratibha Singh is Himachal Congress chief

The rejig in the state unit was a long-pending demand of the party’s leaders amid squabbling between various factions to assert their dominance in the party.
Pratibha Singh’s victory in the Mandi bypolls, the home turf of incumbent chief minister Jai Ram Thakur, solidified her claim for the post of Congress’ Himachal chief. (HT File)
Pratibha Singh’s victory in the Mandi bypolls, the home turf of incumbent chief minister Jai Ram Thakur, solidified her claim for the post of Congress’ Himachal chief. (HT File)
Updated on Apr 27, 2022 05:46 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Women of rural Himachal leading the change towards natural farming

Women of rural Himachal Pradesh, who have been working hard in silence for many years, are now emerging as leaders in the implementation of non-chemical, low-cost and climate-resilient natural farming
The environment-friendly and sustainable techniques being adopted by the women of rural Himachal have helped improve their lives and livelihoods and they are now serving as inspiration for others. (HT Photo)
The environment-friendly and sustainable techniques being adopted by the women of rural Himachal have helped improve their lives and livelihoods and they are now serving as inspiration for others. (HT Photo)
Published on Apr 26, 2022 12:51 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Unusually warm weather takes toll on cherry crop in Himachal

Timely rainfall can shoot up the production of cherry up to 375 metric tonnes this year 25 MT more than last season, says managing director, Himachal Pradesh Marketing Board
Apart from apple, cherry production plays an important role in the economy of fruit growers in Himachal. (Deepak Sansta/Hindustan Times)
Apart from apple, cherry production plays an important role in the economy of fruit growers in Himachal. (Deepak Sansta/Hindustan Times)
Published on Apr 23, 2022 03:21 AM IST
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By, Shimla

BJP general secy holds one-on-one meeting with Jai Ram’s ministers

BJP national general secretary (organisation) BL Santhosh, who is on a two-day tour to the state capital, met several leaders and sought feedback on both the working of the government as well as preparations for the polls
BJP national general secretary BL Santhosh with Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur and party state president Suresh Kashyap (centre) at the party headquarters in Shimla on Thursday. (ANI)
BJP national general secretary BL Santhosh with Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur and party state president Suresh Kashyap (centre) at the party headquarters in Shimla on Thursday. (ANI)
Published on Apr 22, 2022 04:40 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Covid lockdown in China begins to choke Himachal’s pharma hub

Over the past month, prices of medicines have doubled and there has been a 50% increase in the rates of packaging material
The lockdown in China’s commercial capital of Shanghai to contain the spread of Covid-19 has disrupted the supply of raw material to Himachal Pradesh’s pharmaceutical hub in the Baddi-Barotiwala and Nalagarh industrial belt, the biggest pharma hub in Asia. (Representative photo)
The lockdown in China’s commercial capital of Shanghai to contain the spread of Covid-19 has disrupted the supply of raw material to Himachal Pradesh’s pharmaceutical hub in the Baddi-Barotiwala and Nalagarh industrial belt, the biggest pharma hub in Asia. (Representative photo)
Published on Apr 21, 2022 03:06 PM IST
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Nigerians key players in HP’s well-oiled narco network

From 2017 to 2021, of the total foreign nationals arrested for involvement in the drug trade, 36 were Nigerians, which makes up 50% of the total arrests
In the last few years, Nigerian dealers have captured a large chunk of Himachal drug trade with high value contraband like cocaine and developed a network of local peddlers. (Image for representational purpose only)
In the last few years, Nigerian dealers have captured a large chunk of Himachal drug trade with high value contraband like cocaine and developed a network of local peddlers. (Image for representational purpose only)
Updated on Apr 21, 2022 04:45 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Foreigners run drug smuggling ring in Himachal, Nigerians top list: Police data

From 2017 to 2021, a total of 72 foreign nationals have been arrested for their involvement in narcotics trade in the hill state. Of these, 36 were Nigerian nationals, followed by 15 from other African countries, 14 Europeans, four Americans, two from the Middle East while one from an Asian country.
Most of the Nigerian nationals arrested for supplying drugs to Himachal Pradesh were operating from Delhi. (Representational image)
Most of the Nigerian nationals arrested for supplying drugs to Himachal Pradesh were operating from Delhi. (Representational image)
Updated on Apr 21, 2022 02:26 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Dry spell hits area under cultivation, water schemes in Himachal

Unusually high temperatures have created a drought-like situation in Himachal Pradesh, where 16.5% area under cultivation has been affected and 434 water supply schemes hit
Smoke billows from a forest a part of which caught fire near Tara Devi in Shimla on Tuesday. (HT Photo)
Smoke billows from a forest a part of which caught fire near Tara Devi in Shimla on Tuesday. (HT Photo)
Published on Apr 20, 2022 04:12 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Shinku La tunnel: BRO task force HQ to come up at Jispa in Lahaul

Border Road Organisation to start work on world’s highest highway tunnel at Shinku La soon; DG reviews preparations
The Border Road Organisation will start building the world’s highest highway tunnel under the Shinku La (Pass) soon. (HT Photo)
The Border Road Organisation will start building the world’s highest highway tunnel under the Shinku La (Pass) soon. (HT Photo)
Published on Apr 19, 2022 01:48 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Haatee community to boycott HP elections over ST status

Dominant community in Sirmaur district revived its five-decade-old demand for ST status recently and is now determined to get its due
Members of the Haatee community during a congregation at Sangrah village in Sirmaur on Monday. (HT Photo)
Members of the Haatee community during a congregation at Sangrah village in Sirmaur on Monday. (HT Photo)
Published on Apr 19, 2022 01:31 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Himachal assembly polls: Kangra turns battleground for BJP, AAP

BJP national chief JP Nadda to address public meeting in Kangra district a day before Kejriwal’s rally; Congress marred by factionalism
BJP national president JP Nadda will attend a public meeting at Nagrota Bhawan on April 22 to blow the poll bugle in Kangra district. (PTI)
BJP national president JP Nadda will attend a public meeting at Nagrota Bhawan on April 22 to blow the poll bugle in Kangra district. (PTI)
Updated on Apr 18, 2022 11:27 AM IST
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ByGaurav Bisht/Naresh K Thakur, Shimla/dharamshala

A fear-driven move: AAP on Himachal CM’s announcement about freebies

Delhi’s deputy CM also held a press conference in the capital wherein he said that the BJP, which was against the AAP’s decision to give free power, is now emulating the same party out of fear
Delhi deputy CM Manish Sisodia addresses a press conference on Himachal Pradesh issue at his residence, in New Delhi, on Friday. (Sanjeev Verma/HT PHOTO)
Delhi deputy CM Manish Sisodia addresses a press conference on Himachal Pradesh issue at his residence, in New Delhi, on Friday. (Sanjeev Verma/HT PHOTO)
Published on Apr 16, 2022 02:04 AM IST
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By, Shimla

Himachal | With heatwave scorching plains, tourists make a beeline for the hills

As the temperatures in the plains touch record highs, tourist season in Himachal starts a month in advance
However, this time the majority of the hotels run by the Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation are running at full capacity. (Deepak Sansta / HT)
However, this time the majority of the hotels run by the Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation are running at full capacity. (Deepak Sansta / HT)
Published on Apr 15, 2022 02:49 AM IST
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By, Shimla

BJP retaining power crucial for Nadda in home state of Himachal

During his recent three-day visit, BJP chief met party office-bearers, legislators, councillors, and even booth workers; he declared that winnability will be the sole criterion for ticket allocation and those who don’t perform must be ready to perish
BJP president JP Nadda with Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur and other party leaders during a roadshow in Shimla on April 9. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
BJP president JP Nadda with Himachal Pradesh chief minister Jai Ram Thakur and other party leaders during a roadshow in Shimla on April 9. (Deepak Sansta/HT)
Published on Apr 13, 2022 03:05 PM IST
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Himachal: Fresh war of words erupts between BJP & AAP

BJP’s HP incharge Avinash Rai Khanna said AAP leaders are deserting the party due to confusion as they have no state unit; AAP spokesperson Gaurav Sharma countered by saying that the rise of the Aam Aadmi Party in Himachal has scared the BJP, which is now trying to poach their leaders
Union minister Anurag Thakur and BJP national general secretary Arun Singh had on Monday inducted former AAP leader DK Tyagi into the party fold in New Delhi. Former AAP Himachal Pradesh president Anoop Kesari is also seen. (PTI)
Union minister Anurag Thakur and BJP national general secretary Arun Singh had on Monday inducted former AAP leader DK Tyagi into the party fold in New Delhi. Former AAP Himachal Pradesh president Anoop Kesari is also seen. (PTI)
Published on Apr 13, 2022 01:27 AM IST
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By, Shimla
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Tuesday, May 17, 2022