New Delhi: The BJP leadership is receiving worrying signals from Uttarakhand, with various agencies suggesting a decline in the popularity graph of Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat.
The situation has come to such a pass that folk songs in the local dialect critical of Rawat are getting viral on social media. Also, an advisor, who is an industrialist from Mumbai, is facing allegations of corruption.
There is speculation that the BJP leadership may take an important call in terms of change of guard in Uttarakhand after the forthcoming Assembly elections in five states in 2021. Uttarakhand goes to the polls in 2022. Once the BJP had changed leadership in the Uttarakhand government just before the Assembly elections there. It had then removed Ramesh Pokhriyal as CM. However, the central leadership of the party was not as strong then as it is today. That was the reason why CM Bhuvan Chandra Khanduri had been defeated, allegedly because of the collusion between the BJP and Congress. But now the BJP has a strong leader like Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is capable of ensuring a victory for the party in states as well. Bihar is the latest example of this and the Prime Minister continues to be a popular figure in Uttarakhand too.
A local song “Modi twe se bair nahi, jhanpu teri khari nahi” is a criticism of the CM and expression of admiration for the PM. However, the line does not name the CM directly, but is targeted towards Rawat. A message in local dialect is doing the rounds urging PM Modi to remove Rawat and save Uttarakhand.
All this is affecting the BJP’s image badly apart putting a question mark on the government’s credibility.
Chief Minister Rawat’s behaviour and work style are both under public scrutiny. BJP workers allege that he does not meet anyone. Some MLAs and leaders have met the top leadership with the complaint that Rawat is inaccessible. There are complaints about the government being run by four officers and the CM’s kin.
There is also a controversy over the purchase of land for a lake being developed in Doiwala Assembly constituency. A controversy over an advisor’s company has also been raised in the Assembly. The advisor is from Mumbai. His name has been removed from the company after the row. Uttarakhand will be going to the polls early next year with Uttar Pradesh. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s popularity is at its pinnacle in Uttar Pradesh, while Trivendra Singh Rawat is being dubbed as the weakest Chief Minister of the BJP. It is indicated that the leadership may take an important decision in May 2021. Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, Ajay Bhatt, Teerath Singh Rawat and Satpal Maharaj are stated to be strong contenders for the top post in Uttarakhand.