Rebellion peters out in Uttarakhand Congress

March 20th, 2012 - 4:49 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia Gandhi Dehradun, March 20 (IANS) The week-long crisis in Uttarakhand following the coronation of Vijay Bahuguna as chief minister finally seems to be easing out with senior Congress leaders Tuesday indicating that “things were being sorted out”.

The first indication of a patch-up came from party leader Harak Singh Rawat when he said the Congress leadership had understood their viewpoint and that at no point were they interested in derailing the Bahuguna government in the hill state.

“It is obvious that people have aspirations for their leaders. I see no harm in people demanding that I or Harish Rawatji was made the chief minister,” he said, adding that now that a decision has been taken, the cadres and supporters would give up resistance.

Some Congress leaders in Uttarakhand had raised the banner of revolt after Harak Singh Rawat and Harish Rawat were denied the chief minister’s chair. Eleven legislators loyal to the Rawats did not take oath as legislators.

But Bahuguna is slated to expand his council of ministers.

Informed sources say that after a terse warning from 10 Janpath - the residence of party chief Sonia Gandhi - both Harish Rawat and Harak Singh Rawat decided to attend the swearing in of the new ministers.

The sources told IANS that many legislators had already checked out of Uttarakhand Niwas and were headed for Dehradun.

The Congress government was plunged into crisis after 17 legislators owing allegiance to the Rawat camp rebelled against the leadership’s decision to overrule their demands and nominate Bahuguna as chief minister.

The BJP has a strength of 31 in the assembly, just one behind the Congress’ 32.

With three Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) legislators and the sole Uttarakhand Kranti Dal (UKD) member supporting the government, the Congress was caught in a bind due to the rebellion within the party.

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