GARHWAL, UTTARAKHAND LEFT OUT IN THE FINAL CABINET RESHUFFLE

GARHWAL, UTTARAKHAND LEFT OUT IN THE FINAL CABINET RESHUFFLE

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SUNIL NEGI

While the third and supposedly a final reshuffle in the Union Cabinet has been affected with good number of new faces in with promotions of some with powerful ministries, the Himalayan state, Uttarakhand that accorded BJP a resounding majority in both the national election of 2014 and thereafter in the recently held state polls has to suffice with just one minister of state already sworn in a year ago, namely Ajay Tamta, hailing from Kumaon Division. In the national election of 2014, the BJP won all the five Lok Sabha seats and in the state legislative elections too secured more than the absolute majority with 57 lawmakers winning, a record, never ever established during the last 17 years of state achieving independent status. When prime minister Narendra Modi campaigned during the national as well as the legislative elections of Uttarakhand he always made tall promises and even went to the extent of giving an impression that if BJP comes to power in the state he will change Uttarakhand and its economy upside down. He also promised of giving Uttarakhand a genuine equitable representation in Union cabinet. He visited historic religious SHRINE KEDARNATH an initiated his election campaign after Baba Kedar’s pious darshan thus always keeping the Himalayan state quite in mind as far as giving the people of this economically backward state its due share in the Union cabinet.  But the cabinet reshuffle and expansion of today, on 3rd, September,  has definitely annoyed the Uttarakhandies nationally as the entire Garhwal region has been kept unrepresented and Uttarakhand being represented by just a single minister of a low profile ministry. During the tenure of Atal Bihar Vajpayee from 1999 to 2004 Uttarakhand had two ministers Retd. Major General Bhuvan Chandra Khanduri from Garhwal as a cabinet rank appointee representing Road Transport and  National Highways while Bachi Singh Rawat from Kumaon as Minister of State for Science and Technology. During Congress’ s regime prior to becoming the Chief Minister Uttarakhand, Harish Rawat represented the Himalayan hill state singularly as Minister of State for labor first and later on as MOS agriculture. In the past, during Indira’ s and Rajiv’s tenure, Uttarakhand had been represented by several ministers in the union cabinet viz. H.N Bahuguna, K. C. Pant, Narayan Dutt Tiwari and Brahm Dutt all cabinet rank ministers representing powerful ministries like Industry, Finance, Communications, Petroleum and Chemicals, and Education. During Janata Party government too in the eighties HN Bahuguna and Murli Manohar Joshi were full fledged cabinet ministers adequately representing Garhwal and Kumaon divisions of Uttarakhand while it was the part f undivided Uttar Pradesh. Not only this but there was a time when Bhagat Darshan Singh and Jagmohan Singh Negi had also been cabinet ministers thus having Uttarakhands adequate representation while Govind Ballabh Pant was number two in his capacity of India’s home minister while Jawaharlal Nehru was the prime minister. Therefore, going by the previous considerations and representations in the Union cabinet the people of Uttarakhand are annoyed to find just a single state level unimportant representation in the union cabinet despite their whole hearted support to BJP giving it a resounding majority in both the national and legislative elections. Garhwal especially finds itself cheated by not having been represented even this time too, the 3rd and final expansion of Modi’s cabinet. What do you say, friends?

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