Cong faces rebellion inUttarakhand


Congress, on Tuesday night,
was faced with a rebellion in
Uttarakhand as senior leader Harish
Rawat’s camp made it clear that he
would not give up his claim on chief
ministership but he vowed to fight it
out within the party. Rawat, who is
learnt to have offered to resign as
minister of
state for parliamentary affairs and
agriculture in protest against his not
being considered for chief
ministership, was closeted with a
sizeable number of 32 Congress MLAs
supporting him throughout the day
strategising the next course of
action.
The Congress was said to be worried
in the wake of Rawat’s supporters
keeping away from the swearing-in
ceremony of Vijay Bahuguna and
one of the newly-elected MLAs
saying the new government would
not last even for 10-15 days. Harish
Rawat told reporters tonight that he
has no plans to quit Congress but
would continue to fight for his claim
on chief ministership.
“I am a Congress worker and will
seek redressal of my grievances
within Congress forum,” was his
brief refrain to a volley of questions.
He, however, refused to spell out
next course of action. However,
senior party leader and MLA Harak
Singh Rawat, one of those
supporting him, was more forthright
when he said “the future of new
government in Uttarakhand is very
bleak… It can continue only for 10-15
days.” Opposing Bahuguna who was
sworn-in as chief minister Tuesday
evening, Harak Singh Rawat said he
has “no contribution in the state and
has been imposed on us”. He
credited Harish Rawat with playing a
major role in Congress victory in
Assembly eletions in Uttarakhand.
Sources close to Harish said that the
attendance of just around 10
Congress MLAs at the swearing in
ceremony of Bahuguna reaffirmed
the point that he is the “real leader”
of the party there.
There was speculation that Harish
had met BJP chief Nitin
Gadkari Monday night but it was
denied by another supporter MP
Pradip Tamta.
Union minister Ghulam Nabi Azad,
party in-charge of the state who had
announced the name of Bahuguna
as chief minister also rubbished this
speculation saying he can never
even think that Rawat will meet
Gadkari or go to any other party. “He
(Rawat) is a committed Congress
worker and will remain in Congress.
He is a member of the Union Council
of Ministers and he has a
contribution to make there,” Azad
said.

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