Buoyed by the success of Parivartan Rally in Dehradun held on September 8, the Uttaranchal unit of BJP started Parivartan Yatra in the state from November 9, the sixth anniversary day of Uttaranchal'sformation. The first part of the Yatra spread across Garhwal and concluded in Kotdwar on November 23. The Kumaon leg would begin from Rudrapur on December 13 followed by concluding meeting in Haldwani on December 25.
Senior party leaders including national president Shri Rajnath Singh, former president Shri Venkaiah Naidu, senior leader Dr Murli Manohar Joshi and former Union Minister Smt. Sushma Swaraj addressed the massive gatherings across the state. Starting from Haridwar on November 9, state president Shri Bhagat Singh Koshyari and former Union Minister Shri B.C. Khanduri embarked on a rath (chariot) and traversing nearly 2,800 km distance addressed hundreds of rallies. With the objective of regaining power, which it lost unexpectedly to the Congress in the last assembly elections, the BJP has begun its poll exercise by undertaking the Parivartan Yatra.
Addressing a massive gathering in Kotdwar on November 23, Shri Rajnath Singh said the BJP does not believe in grabbing power by giving up its principles and ideology. ?It does not believe in stooping to petty politics for power. National interest is paramount for us. The BJP does not compromise with the dignity of the nation for gaining power. The people in Uttaranchal are ready to get rid of the misrule of Congress government. People of the state have got tired of corruption, unemployment, law and order situation and the crimes. Now they should trust BJP and vote in its favour in the forthcoming elections for their own and state'sgood,? Shri Rajnath Singh said further adding that the N.D. Tewari government has ruined the state and it has failed at all fronts. He listed growing unemployment, rising debt burden, corruption and wastage of public money on providing ministerial benefits to many as major flaws. There has been no significant achievement. Instead the government has managed to push the state backwards and there is an air of disillusionment among the public. Growing inflation, a debt burden of nearly Rs 15,000 crore, scams, the Chief Minister'sreluctance to continue in the office and severe differences within the ruling Congress were cited as other reasons for the state'sills.
Talking to Organiser in Dehradun, Shri Mohan Singh Rawat ?Gramvasi?, convenor of the Yatra, claimed that people of Uttaranchal would teach a lesson to the Congress and deliver it a crushing defeat in the forthcoming elections. ?Through the Yatra the BJP will come back to power with a thumping majority. Congress has failed to fulfill its promises. The Yatra has covered all the constituencies of Garhwal region and will proceed to every constituency of the Kumaon region in next phase,? he said. Shri Gramvasi said the Yatra is exposing the failures of the Congress'sgovernment. ?The Congress is flabbergasted at the response the Parivartan Yatra is receiving from voters and it is now planning to undertake a ?Vikas Sankalp Yatra?. But disillusioned voters are not going to be moved by any such tactics,? he said.
Shri Bhagat Singh Koshyari charged the Congress government with being corrupt and inept. He said the reason to undertake the Parivartan Yatra is to take the message of change to all the villages of the hills and to create awareness about the need for a change. Shri Koshyari claimed that tall claims of development by the Congress government proved false. Stepping up his attack on the ruling Congress he claimed that most achievements mentioned in the book Himalayan Prayas?Atulaniya Vikas (Himalayan effort?incomparable development) were false and aimed at misleading the voters ahead of the forthcoming assembly polls. ?The book is a bundle of lies and half-truths and does not present a true picture of the Congress misrule in Uttaranchal,? he added.
Terming the government claims of having constructed and repaired 9,800 km of roads as false, Shri Koshyari held that till date the government has not achieved even 10 per cent of that figure and money allotted for roads has been lying unutilised. ?Contrary to claims made, till date the government has not been able to generate even a single megawatt of power,? he said. He also ridiculed the assertion made in the book that nearly 2,000 teachers have been appointed by the Congress government, saying that most of those appointments had been made during the previous BJP regime.
Echoing similar sentiments, Shri B.C. Khanduri said the government was trying to mislead the voters by making false claims about development in the state. ?The Tewari government is trying to take credit for the projects allotted or started by the previous NDA government at the Centre and the earlier BJP regime in Uttaranchal. They seem to have no shame,? he stated.
Former Finance Minister, Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal ?Nishank? expressed disgust at the way the Congress government was running the state. He said the dream of the agitators and those who lost their lives during the struggle for the state'sformation had been betrayed. Alleging that the Congress government has under-utilised the state'sresources, he said the tall talks of development were all false, despite Uttaranchal having been given special status by the central government. He referred to the heavy borrowing of Rs. 18,000 crore that burdened the state. But the money so obtained was not being used in development activities. On the other hand, the crime rate in the state has gone up, with nearly 10,000 cases of serious crime having taken place during the Congress regime. Apart from this, 60 major scams took place, which included the infamous Daroga and Patwari recruitment cases, he added.
Former Chief Minister, Shri Nityanand Swami while talking to Organiser said there was a great frustration among people at the poor performance of Congress government and the corruption is seen at every level of administration. He asserted that government'sclaim of employing a large number of youth in education department is also false. Most of the appointments in the Education Department as Shiksha Mitra had been made during the BJP rule in the state. Lal Battis have been distributed to a very large number of people and in an indiscrete fashion; law and order has broken down with serious crimes like kidnapping, rapes and murders becoming an everyday story. He promised that the BJP would provide a clean and transparent administration with balanced development on its top agenda.
He said the people of the state now wanted a change in the government. The Congress government did no work for development but still made claims about it. He also claimed that many projects had been approved and more than half completed by the NDA government. The Congress government had not been able to even complete these. In cases where the work had been completed, he said, the Congress government is claiming that it has started and completed the projects. Citing an example, he said the construction of 7 bridges between Haridwar and Moradabad were over 90 percent complete during the BJP rule, yet the Congress government took more than four years to complete the remaining 10 per cent work and still is taking the credit for the same.
Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, in charge of Uttaranchal, said the BJP would fulfill the aspirations of the people if voted to power. The people of the state should punish those who have done nothing for their welfare and instead ruined the state. Shri Bachi Singh Rawat, MP, Shri Balraj Pasi former MP, Shri Matbar Singh Kandari, Leader of Opposition and Shri Ajay Bhatt, MLA also addressed the meetings.