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‘Uttarakhand govt shielding big fish in NH 74 scam, why no CBI probe?’

Congress veteran and Leader of Opposition in the assembly Indira Hridayesh has alleged that chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat failed on all fronts during his first year in office

dehradun Updated: Mar 17, 2018 21:13 IST
Deep Joshi
Deep Joshi
Hindustan Times
Leader of Opposition Indira Hridayesh. (HT Photo)

Congress veteran and Leader of Opposition in the assembly Indira Hridayesh has alleged that chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat failed on all fronts during his first year in office. In an interview, she pooh-poohed his policy of zero tolerance for graft and dares him to enact the proposed Lokayukta (anti-graft) law and name Gairsain as a permanent capital.

Chief minister Trivednra Singh Rawat is completing his one year in office. How do you rate the BJP government’s performance?

This (BJP) government has badly failed on all fronts, especially development. It has failed in fiscal management and has no funds to pay employees their salaries.

The government claims that it has initiated a series of steps to strengthen the health sector, like appointing 600 additional doctors…

The health sector has gone to dogs like farm and education sectors… All the state-run hospitals in the hills are devoid of medical facilities and are grappling with paucity of doctors. Most doctors who were recently transferred to the hills quit their jobs to start private practice.

The government claims that it is giving a boost to the farm sector by popularising organic farming among hill farmers. It claims that 10,000 organic clusters are being developed in the state…

Their plans never translate on the ground. Farmers are dying of hunger because they are not even getting adequate price for their crops… When farmers are not able to handle traditional farming, how would they handle organic farming?

The government recently constituted the Rural Development and Migration Commission… It claims that 670 Nyaya Panchayats in the state are being developed as growth centres to boost rural economy.

These all are tall talks…Have they rebuilt the houses that were washed away by the cataclysmic floods that hit the state in 2013? Have they rehabilitated those who were rendered homeless? In such a situation what will people do if not migrate?

The government claims that the centrally funded schemes coming up in the state, such as the Chardham all-weather road project and the Rishkesh-Karnprayag rail line project, will help boost tourism…

The National Green Tribunal has stopped work on both the centrally funded projects. Let the government first clarify how those (projects) are being implemented…Let the time come… We all will see what kind of infrastructure they are building.

The BJP government recently introduced NCERT books in schools to “ensure” uniformity of education. It claims that schools and colleges are being equipped with facilities like e-library.

The condition of both school and higher education is dismal in the state. They are imposing dress code on students instead of providing them facilities to enhance their employability…

The government says its recent move to link airstrips with helicopter services will help boost tourism. As part of that move it is also developing a new destination each in all the 13 districts.

Their helicopter service scheme meant for the common man has not taken wings. They are talking of developing new destinations…Let them first develop the highly mismanaged old destinations.

The chief minister claims to have walked the talk on corruption and initiated action against officials involved in NH scam.

Why doesn’t this government order a CBI inquiry into the multi-crore NH scam? How can middle-level officials alone be involved in the fraud without the support of big fish? Obviously, the government is shielding the big fish.

The BJP says it had tabled the proposed Lokayukta (anti-graft) Bill in the assembly on time but its passing was delayed because of your party’s ambivalence.

There is no truth in that. This government is shying away from appointing the Lokayukta (anti-graft ombudsman) because it has skeletons in its cupboards.

The BJP says that it will soon fulfil its promise to name Gairsain as a summer capital… It says the state government has already started formulating a plan to develop it as a township.

They have put up not a single brick at Gairsain… Our (Congress) government built Vidhan Bhawan in that town. Let this (BJP) government clarify whether it is going to set up a permanent capital there (Gairsain) or a summer capital…We will raise the issue of permanent capital in the assembly’s budget session that starts at Gairsain soon. It will be the first issue we will raise on the floor of the House.

First Published: Mar 17, 2018 21:13 IST