Have permanent solution to Gairsain issue, will implement it: Pant
The BJP government has found a permanent solution to the issue of Uttarakhand’s permanent capital that’s been eluding the hill state since its creation some 17 years ago, state finance minister Prakash Pant said Fridaydehradun Updated: Jun 09, 2017 20:10 IST
The BJP government has found a permanent solution to the issue of Uttarakhand’s permanent capital that’s been eluding the hill state since its creation some 17 years ago, state finance minister Prakash Pant said Friday.
“We have a permanent solution to the contentious issue of the state’s permanent capital and we are in a situation to implement it owing to the unprecedented mandate people gave us in the assembly election,” Pant said in the state assembly.
He was replying to the call attention motion moved by Leader of the Opposition Indira Hridayesh on the second day of the ongoing budget session.
Earlier, the veteran Congress leader asked if government was planning to notify Gairsain as its permanent capital. “We want you to clarify whether you want to set up a permanent capital at Gairsain in keeping with the people’s demand,” she said.
Hridayesh also accused the BJP government of speaking in different voices on the issue in an apparent reference to the highlanders’ demand that the state’s centrally located hill town be made the permanent capital.
The Congress leader also accused the ruling party of “dishonouring” a unanimous resolution passed in the budget session held at the Gairsain Vidhan Sabha Bhawan last year that the next budget session too would be held there. “This government chose to hold the session in Dehradun in clear violation of the unanimous resolution,” she said. She was seconded by former Speaker G S Kunjwal who charged the BJP government with contempt of the House by not adhering to the resolution.
Hridayesh said when it was in the Opposition party, the BJP vociferously demanded that the Congress government notify Gairsain as the state’s permanent capital. “Your party is in power now. People are feeling cheated, thanks to your decision (to hold budget session in Dehradun),” Hridayesh said.
Kunjwal pooh-poohed chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat’s statement that holding budget session at Gaisain would pose extra burden on the official machinery, which was engaged in facilitating the ongoing annual yatra (pilgrimage) to the Chardham. “We (Congress government) had organised the session at Gairsain around this time but that did not cause any hindrance to the yatra,” he added.
Replying to the motion, Pant conceded that that Gairsain was an issue closely associated with the people’s sentiments. He, however, said that as per the rules, all infrastructure should be complete in a place for the House to be convened. “The assembly building at Gairsain is still under construction, so the session can’t be convened there,” Pant said while accusing the successive governments of failing to resolve the issue.
“We have the solution and we will implement it,” Pant said but added that the BJP government doesn’t want to convene an assembly session at Gairsain “just to pacify the people”.
Kunjwal, however, refuted Pant. “The assembly building and all other residential and official buildings for officers, employees and legislators are ready (at Gairsain),” he claimed.