Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat Wednesday announced that Gairsain will be the summer capital of the state, partially fulfilling the demand of the hill people to make it the permanent capital.
Rawat made the announcement during the ongoing Budget session of the Uttarakhand Assembly at Gairsain. Later in a tweet, Rawat said, “Uttarakhand is a hilly state, a capital in the hills has been the dream of the people and we have struggled for the same as well. Respecting the sentiments of the people, we have decided to declare Gairsain as the summer capital of the state.”
“I salute the mothers of the state who participated in the Uttarakhand movement along with the youth and those who sacrificed themselves in the state-building movement,” he added.
A summer capital is a city used as an administrative capital during extended periods of particularly hot weather.
In 1992, Kahsi Singh Aeri, then president of the Uttarakhand Kranti Dal, had declared that Gairsain, 272 km from Dehradun, would be the capital of the state for which he was heading a movement. Since attaining the statehood, however, Dehradun has been the temporary capital of the state and still houses the chief minister’s residence, Raj Bhavan and MLA residences.
Gairsain has been a key poll promise by the BJP and the Congress, ever since the first assembly elections were held in 2002. But both the parties were not able to act on the demand of the people.
Every government has, however, been wary about declaring Dehradun the permanent capital, because Gairsain’s demand strikes an emotional chord with residents of the hill regions.
Gairsain boasts of Badrinath and the Valley of Flowers as major tourist attractions.
The state assembly mostly meets in Dehradun, but occasionally sessions – like the current Budget session – are held in Gairsain as well.
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