Oppn flays Ukd govt for not holding assembly session in Gairsain this year

        Dehradun, Dec 4 (PTI) The opposition Congress on Wednesday attacked the state government in Uttarakhand assembly for its failure in holding even a single session this year in Gairsain, a town in Chamoli district which was in the forefront of the agitation for the state and was once envisaged as its capital.

The Congress flayed the government saying it was a betrayal of the aspirations of the people who fought for the statehood to Uttarakhand.

Participating in a debate on the issue in the State assembly here, Congress MLA Karan Mahra said it was unfortunate that an excuse like 'cold' was offered for not holding a session in Gairsain.

'Gairsain represents the aspirations of the people who made great sacrifices for the creation of Uttarakhand. The year is coming to an end. It is unfortunate that the winter session is not being held there due to something like cold,' the Ranikhet MLA said.  Leader of Opposition Indira Hridayesh insisted on an announcement by the government for holding an assembly session in Gairsain before the end of the financial year.

'You must give an assurance to the House so that your professed commitment on Gairsain does not look like an eyewash,' Hridayesh said, suggesting that the assembly's Budget session be held there in February.

Replying to the debate, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Madan Kaushik said no one was opposed to holding a session of the state assembly in Gairsain.

'Lack of infrastructure in Gairsain was felt even by the opposition members when a session of the House was held there last year. We are working hard on putting in place the kind of infrastructure we need there. It is our priority,' he said and assured the House that a session of the assembly will be held there.  Former Chief Minister Harish Rawat also staged a dharna-cum-fast in Gairsain against Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat's statement that the winter session was not held there due to cold.  Terming it 'an insult of the hill people', Rawat said the work initiated during his tenure for the development of Gairsain had been stopped by the Trivendra Singh Rawat government.  'They stopped infrastructural projects started during my time. They have not moved even an inch forward on the ones that are underway. And now they talk about the lack of infrastructure,' Rawat said, addressing people during the dharna.