Bharatiya Janata Party leader Trivendra Singh Rawat who was sworn in as Uttarakhand’s new Chief Minister on Saturday is said to have an “honest image of a hard working man”. Even though popular in the state, Rawat’s “national recognition” is not widespread and party workers identify him as a person who keeps a low profile, though he has played a key role in organisational work.
Rawat was with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) from 1983 to 2002 and held the post of the BJP organising secretary in Uttarakhand. In 2002, Rawat won the Doiwala Assembly seat and was elected to the Assembly thrice.
A close aide of Rawat, requesting anonymity, said, “Doiwala was a place where the BJP had no outreach and yet we managed to win it under his leadership.”
Rawat has also served as the state agricultural minister between 2007 and 2012. A party worker said: “Uttarakhand won the Rashtriya Krishi Karman Award when he was the agricultural minister. He had initiated the ‘Swachhik Chakbandi Yojana’ to help the farming community organise their agricultural land in the hills and resolve disputes because of which a lot of farmers had started to feel discouraged to continue farming. He is somebody who is connected to the people at the grassroots level.”
Going forward, the Rawat government’s focus will be on generating employment opportunities to stop migration of youth in the state, to focus on improving tourism and boost the cottage industries, along with promoting ayurvedic, aromatic and organic initiatives in Uttarakhand.
Rawat, who was unanimously chosen as the Chief Minister, is known to have led the BJP to victory in the Jharkhand Assembly elections in 2014. Rawat is the third term MLA from the Doiwala seat in Pauri Garhwal district and is known for his loyalty to the party.
According to the affidavit filed by him, Rawat has assets worth over Rs 1 crore. The new Uttarakhand Chief Minister has no criminal cases against him and holds a post-graduate degree in History. He has also studied journalism from the Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University.
After being announced Chief Minister, Rawat said that his main aim would be to “provide people of the state with a corruption-free government and bring about a major change in the lives of the poorest of the poor which is also Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s top priority.”