Conceding defeat in Himachal Pradesh Assembly polls, Chief Minister Jairam Thakur on Thursday tendered his resignation to the governor, official sources said.
Governor Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar has accepted his resignation, they said.
Congress crossed the majority mark and won 40 seats in the 68-member Himachal Pradesh Assembly. The chief minister earlier said he respects the mandate.
"I respect the mandate. In a short while, I am going to hand over my resignation to the governor," Thakur told reporters here shortly before handing over his resignation to Governor Arlekar.
The BJP won 25 seats in the election. Three Independents have also emerged victorious.
Himachal Pradesh has not voted any incumbent government to power since 1985.
"Now, new government will be formed, I extend congratulations to them (Congress) and hope they will fulfil their promises.”
"We will give constructive support rising above partisan politics but, where we feel interests of the state have not been protected, we will raise the issues before people," said the chief minister.
He said, “Going by the results which have come, I respect people's mandate and thank them from my heart. For five years, they gave us time to serve. We tried to do better," he said.
Replying to a question, Thakur said on many seats the victory margin was narrow. He also said on 11 to 12 seats winning margins were below 1,000 votes.
"If you also see vote share, the difference (between Congress and BJP) is just about one per cent. Despite that, Congress registered a win on many seats. But, we respect the mandate," he said.
He, however, said his party will analyse the results.
Asked if Old Pension Scheme dented BJP's prospects, he said it will not be right to arrive at conclusions just now, we will take feedback from different sources.
On BJP rebels contesting on many seats can be a reason for the party to lose the polls, he said all issues will be discussed.
Responding to a question that Congress may take their MLAs to Chandigarh fearing horse trading, Thakur quipped, "They are elected MLAs. But, there is a race among leaders in that party as to who will become the CM and that's what they are fearing."
On AAP failing to open an account in the polls, Thakur said the party had no presence in Himachal.
Thakur said he congratulates all people of Himachal, especially voters of the state who cooperated in ensuring peaceful and record polling.
"Respecting people's mandate, I want to thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the support and cooperation we got for the development of Himachal Pradesh," said the CM.
"We undertook development in all fields and the prime minister deserves credit for this. He also guided us during campaigning," he added.