Bharatiya Janata Party’s Pushkar Singh Dhami took oath as the new chief minister of the northern hill state of Uttarakhand. He will be the third CM in four months following the resignation of his predecessor Tirath Singh Rawat, who in turn had succeeded Trivendra Singh Rawat in March this year. The opposition has accused the ruling BJP of causing “political instability” in the state, where Assembly elections will be held next year.
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After being sworn in as the CM, Dhami said that he is well aware of how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the livelihood of youngsters. “We will try to make the situation better for them and will try to appoint youngsters for the vacant posts in the state,” the new CM said.
Who is Uttarakhand’s new CM Pushkar Singh Dhami?
Dhami hails from the border district of Pithoragarh and is the son of ex-Army personnel. At 45, he will be the youngest CM of Uttarakhand. He is a two-time MLA from Khatima in Udham Singh Nagar.
On being asked whether taking over as CM just months ahead of assembly polls will be an uphill task, Dhami said, “We accept the challenge and we will take forward the party and serve the people,” reported news agency PTI.
Dhami’s name for Uttarakhand’s top job was proposed by outgoing chief minister Tirath Singh Rawat and Pradesh BJP president Madan Kaushik and seconded by several MLAs, including former chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, Union minister and BJP leaders Narendra Singh Tomar said, the news agency reported.
On Saturday, after he was unanimously elected as BJP legislature party leader, he went to the Raj Bhawan to stake a claim to form the next government.
Third CM in four months
Dhami will take over the reins from his predecessor, Tirath Singh Rawat, who resigned on Friday after just four months as the CM. He, in turn, had succeeded Trivendra Singh Rawat on March 10, as the BJP hoped to go into the Assembly polls with the new face.
Trivendra Singh Rawat resigned as the Constitution required him to get elected as an MLA within six months of his appointment as CM. But there seemed no certainty over the Election Commission holding bypolls at this stage.
Also read: 5 times ex-Uttarakhand CM Tirath Singh Rawat courted controversy
How did the opposition react?
The opposition has hit out at the BJP as the new CM’s name was announced on Saturday. The opposition Congress accused the ruling party of causing “political instability” and betraying the people of Uttarkhand.
Former CM and Congress leader Harish Rawat said that “BJP’s high drama in Dehradun is an insult to the people of Uttarakhand,” reported PTI.
Also read: Tirath Rawat’s exit: Only one U’khand CM served a full term in last 20 years
“This is BJP’s example of lust for power, political instability, sharing fruits of power and failure of leadership,” said Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala.
“Instead of serving the people of Uttarakhand, they tried to distribute power, and PM Modi and J P Nadda are responsible for this,” he added.