- For the first time in electoral history of Uttarakhand Rawat will not be contesting elections
- Earlier his daughter in law Anukriti Gusain got a Congress ticket from Lansdowne
- Harak Singh Rawat was a candidate in all the four elections held in the state since November 2000
With all parties having announced their candidates for the February 14 Uttarakhand election, former cabinet minister Harak Singh Rawat has emerged as the most prominent face to have been left out of the poll fray.
It is for the first time in the two-decade old electoral history of Uttarakhand that Rawat -- the veteran of many a poll battle is not contesting. The Kotdwar MLA, who was recently expelled from the BJP for allegedly insisting on a ticket for both himself and his daughter-in-law, had rejoined the Congress on January 22. Despite returning to the Congress fold, he could not get a ticket for himself while his reinduction too was not smooth.
However, the four-time MLA's daughter-in-law and former Femina Miss India contestant Anukriti Gusain did get a Congress ticket from Lansdowne. Harak Singh Rawat has been saying that he is not keen to contest, but would do so if asked by the party. There was speculation about the Congress fielding him from Chaubattakhal constituency against BJP heavyweight and sitting MLA from the seat Satpal Maharaj but things appear to have not fallen into place eventually.
Harak Singh Rawat was a candidate in all the four elections held in the state since its creation in November 2000 and emerged victorious in all of them. He won from Lansdowne in 2002 and 2007. He won from Rudraprayag in 2012 and from Kotdwar in 2017. Meanwhile, Harak Singh Rawat is likely to throw all his might and political clout into the battle to ensure the victory of his daughter-in-law from Lansdowne.
Another prominent leader missing from the poll fray this time is former chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat who opted out saying he did not want to contest so he could focus on working for the BJP's second consecutive victory in the polls. Made chief minister after the party got a huge mandate of 57 out of a total of 70 seats in the state in 2017, Trivendra Singh Rawat was removed rather unceremoniously in March last year just a few days ahead of completing four years in office.