On June 8, 2020 Uttarakhand Governor Baby Rani Maurya approved the declaration of Bhararisen(Gairsain) in Chamoli district as the state’s summer capital in compliance with the provisions of clause (3) of Article 348 of the Constitution of India. Dehradun(the largest city) will remain the winter capital. With this decision, Uttarakhand became the 2nd state in India after Himachal Pradesh with two separate capitals(Shimla and Dharamshala).
- Uttarakhand’s Chief Minister(CM) Trivendra Singh Rawat announced that Gairsain will have an e-Vidhan Sabha on World Environment Day (June 5,2020). The state Assembly is located Dehradun, but sessions are held in Gairsain as well.
i.Uttarakhand was made as a separate state from Uttar Pradesh on November 9, 2000 & became India’s 27th state. The state has two divisions namely Garhwal and Kumaon with 13 districts.
ii.Statehood activists felt that Gairsain was best suited to be the capital of the mountainous state as it is between Kumaon and Garhwal regions, but Dehradun in the plains was named as the temporary capital.
VN Dixit Commission
i.VN Dixit Commission was formed in 2001 by Uttarakhand to search for a permanent capital.
ii.The commission looked into the feasibility of five places – Dehradun, Gairsain, Rishikesh, Kashipur and Ramnagar as the state capital on the basis of several parameters including geographical conditions & population.
iii.In its final report in 2008 it mentioned that the interim capital, Dehradun is suited to be permanent capital & rejected Gairsain as it is more prone to earthquakes.
i.Gairsain is located around 270 km away from Dehradun at 5,410 feet elevation spanning around 7.53 square kilometres, at an altitude of 1,750 metres above sea level and lies at the eastern edge of Dudhatoli mountain range with a population of around 12000.
ii.It is the source of the state’s Ramganga River & in ancient literature it was celebrated as the Kedar Kshetra.
iii.The town has been historically ruled by Nagas, Khasas, Kiratas, Kunindas, and Tunganas. No railways or airport is available in the town but there is a plan to build an airstrip
Uttarakhand’s CM made the announcement about Gairsain being made the summer capital of Uttarakhand during the budget session of the state assembly there on March 4.
Uttarakhand’s National Parks– Jim Corbett National Park, Rajaji National Park, Valley of Flowers National Park, Nanda Devi National Park, Gangotri National Park, Govind Pashu Vihar National Park & Sanctuary.