By declaring Gairsain as the Summer capital, BJP gained an upper hand

By declaring Bharaarisain ( Gairsain) as the summer capital of Uttarakhand which had been the long standing demand of the majority of the inhabitants of the hill state since the last twenty years (though for full statehood ) the Bhartiya Janata Party and its central and state leadership viz Prime minister Narendra Modi, home minister Amit Shah and CM Trivendra Singh Rawat have been intelligent enough to take the credit especially keeping in view the 2022 assembly elections of the state. Sounds interesting that when the world, country and the state is reeling under the panic of contagion Covid 19 for over two n a half months with the nation’s economy and peoples’ life at stake declaration of Bhararisain ( Gairsain) as the official summer capital of Uttarakhand despite Dehradun being its permanent capital is a significant decision which is bound to accompany fruitful political results in favour of the saffron party say political analysts of the state. According to reliable sources the saffron party and its leaders are always known for taking suitable n relevant decisions to take the credit especially the political advantage at the hustings as seen in the past as well.

AICc general secretary n firmer chief minister Uttarakhand

It’s a known fact that while demands for separate Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Chattisgarh states that were carved out of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh were being fought for years together but the BJP during the regime of the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee fulfilled these long pending demands leaving no scope for Congress or other opposition parties to oppose it as it would have brought bad name to them. The saffron party therefore derived the maximum political milieage by forming their governments in these states from time to time n also bringing maximum MPs to parliament. Now, take the case of Congress party in the matter of declaring Gairsain as the capital of Uttarakhand. In 2016/ 17 when Vijay Bahuguna was the Congress chief minister of Uttarakhand, the BJP n other progressive movement activists including the Uttarakhand Kranti Dal demanded Gairsain to be declared as its permanent capital.

There were tremendous opposition to the then state government run by Vijay Bahuguna. Intelligent Bahuguna impressed upon Sonia Gandhi to derive the credit by declaring Gairsain as the summer capital atleast. However, though this demand could not materialise but Vijay Bahuguna was credited for allocating Rs 500 crores for building a new assembly building at Baraarisain , Gairsain.

Former Uttarakhand CM Vijay Bahuguna, now in BJP

The work of construction got started n finally the Assembly secretariat was completed thus successfully laying the foundation of the demand of several decades even the hearty wish of late hero of Peshavar Veer Chandra Singh Garhwali and Baba Mohan Singh Uttarakhandi who sacrificed his life after under taking 100 days of hunger strike. Vijay Bahuguna even held an inaugural function participated by all the lawmakers of Uttarakhand n organising a session of assembly as well followed by Harish Rawat who replaced Vijay Bahuguna. There had been repeated protest demonstrations during Harish Rawat’s tenure as well from 2017 onwards after he replaced Vijay Bahuguna. There had been umpteen allegations on Congress then by the opposition BJP of sidelining the Gairsain issue and backing out of its previous commitment to fulfill this demand thus befooling the state people. Harish Rawat even organised assembly sessions in Gairsain laying tents for MLAs and exhibited his interest on the issue of Gairsain but never declared it either as the Summer capital or the permanent capital.

I fondly remember the statement of the Congress Rajya Sabha MP Pradeep Tamta in a function in Delhi, who is extremely close to Harish Rawat , that had Harish Rawat during his chief ministership of Uttarakhand been serious on Gairsain issue, he should have fulfilled it in 2018 and written his name in the history of Uttarakhand for ever. In the function in Delhi while speaking as the chief guest Pradeep Tamta, MP has unambiguously said to the surprise of those present that when Rawat was Uttarakhand’s CM and the demand for Gairsain to be declared as the state’s capital was on the peak, I had repeatedly requested Harish Rawat, to declare Gairsain, Bharaarisain as the capital of UK if not fully ( permanent capital) then at least partially, as Summer Capital and get his name written in golden letters in the History of Uttarakhand. But he never relied or agreed on my repeated requests.

After two years, however, the BJP has fulfilled the demand though not fully but partially declaring it as the summer capital of Uttarakhand thus taking the sole credit n deriving maximum political milieage say political analysts. While the foundation of fulfilling the demand was laid during the Congress tenure by way of constructing the New Assembly Building n holding sessions, the demand has been fulfilled by BJP leadership which was earlier accused of keeping this issue on the back burner and delaying it not at all caring for peoples’ sentiments.

Now the Congress leaders n general secretary of the party Harish Rawat has no choice but to extend their gratitude to their betenoire Trivendra Singh Rawat, CM Uttarakhand and repent for wrong decision of not fulfilling it in 2018 when they were in power in Uttarakhand n at the centre as well.

Meanwhile the prominent leader of CPI (ML) Mr. Harish Maikhuri has deplored the decision of the BJP government making Gairsain as the summer capital of Uttarakhand instead of declaring it as the permanent capital.

He said that a state like Uttarakhand which is already running under the fiscal deficit of Rs 50 thousand crores will be further overburdened with more deficit as now the state will have to bear the unnecessary expenditures of Dehradun as well as Gaisain Capitals of Uttarakhand.


Sunil Negi

Sunil Negi is a senior journalist and president of Uttarakhand Journalists Forum ( Regd). He usually writes on socio political subjects and have been contributing articles in print media for the last several years. Mr. Sunil Negi had been felicitated by All India Achievers conference's Pride of India and excellence awards apart from several other recognitions. He has translated a book on ecological disaster of Uttarakhand of June 2013 and edited and published two editions of Uttaranchal's Who's Who.

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