Uttarakhand News

2017 Assembly Elections: 5 Unresolved Issues in Uttarakhand

Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi formally revealed the dates of elections for five poll-bound states yesterday. The single-phase election in Uttarakhand will be held on February 15. While the political parties are busy in preparing their manifestos and planning their strategies for the upcoming assembly elections, we look at 5 unresolved issues in Uttarakhand that both BJP and Congress fail to address during their tenures in Uttarakhand’s 16 years of existence and are likely to raise again in 2017 Assembly elections –

1. Permanent Capital

2017 Assembly Elections

Gairsain capital issue has been stretched for more than a decade now.                                                           Image Source

Even before the formation of the state of Uttarakhand, Gairsain as the permanent capital was a number one priority for activists and political parties. At every previous assembly elections, both BJP and Congress promise the electorate to solve Gairsain issue once and for all. Sadly, after 16 years, the issue still remains a political hot potato and is likely to be raised again during the upcoming 2017 Assembly Elections.

2. New Districts

2017 Assembly Elections

There is an urgent need to carved out more districts in Uttarakhand.                                                                            Image Source

Uttarakhand currently has 13 districts in all. However, these 13 districts are inadequate to cater to the overall administrative needs of the state as whole. The demand for additional districts is a common issue played with by both the national parties. However, seldom has been done in this regard. Ranikhet, Haldwani, Kashipur, Roorkee and Kotdwara are top contenders for becoming new districts in future.

3. Agriculture and Horticulture Development

2017 Assembly Elections

Condition of agriculture and horticulture in Uttarakhand is abysmal.                    Image Source: Parth Vadia

Uttarakhand is an agriculture-driven state, development of which could help the state and its population in myriad ways. Yet, political parties during their tenure failed to capitalize on it. Also, the scope of horticulture in the state is huge. It would easily provide livelihood to many and create employment opportunities. In all fairness, present condition of agriculture and horticulture in the state is abysmal.

4. Unemployment

2017 Assembly elections

A man ploughs a field. Unemployment has been on the rise in Uttarakhand.         Image Source: Sunil Kanwal

Ever since Uttarakhand was carved out of Uttar Pradesh, there has been an exponential increase in the number of unemployed youth in the state.  A portion of the blame can be attributed to the appalling education system in the state. Rest can be ascribed to the ineffective employment policies laid out by the respective governments which failed to secure job opportunities for frustrated youths.

5. Migration

2017 Assembly Elections

A ghost village in Uttarakhand lay in ruins .                                    Image Source: Pradyut

Unfortunately, migration has been the foremost issue in Uttarakhand even before the state came into existence. Infact, one for the main reason behind the demand of a separate state was to ensure less migration. This could be achieved by providing better health and education facilities along with employment opportunities in Uttarakhand itself. However, that dream is yet to be realized. Furthermore, as more and more villages turn ghost, it seems a regional party is what Uttarakhand really need at helm in 2017 Assembly Elections.