The Supreme Court Tuesday dismissed a plea seeking directions to the Uttarakhand government to declare Gairsain as the capital of the state and Pratap Nagar as a new district, saying these are "policy decisions" regarding which court cannot issue any directive.
In March this year, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat had announced in the state Assembly that Gairsain in Chamoli district will be the summer capital of the hill state.
A bench headed by Justice R Banumathi was hearing through video-conferencing a plea filed by a Dehradun-based man who was seeking a direction to the Uttarakhand government to declare Gairsain as capital of the state.
"In this writ petition filed under Article 32 of the Constitution of India the petitioner seeks direction to the respondent-State of Uttarakhand to declare the 'Gairsaina' as capital of the State of Uttarakhand and also to declare 'Pratap Nagar' as new district," the bench, also comprising Justices Indu Malhotra and Aniruddha Bose, noted in its order.
"In our considered view, these are the policy decisions regarding which the court cannot issue any direction," the bench said, adding, "The writ petition filed under Article 32 of the Constitution of India is dismissed as devoid of merit."
In March this year, immediately after finishing his budget speech in the state assembly, Rawat had made the announcement that Gairsain will be the summer capital, which partially fulfils a longstanding demand of the hill people and seeks to put an end to an emotive political issue simmering for the last 20 years.
Rawat had said that preparations have to be made on a war footing to build infrastructure Gairsain needs to be the summer capital of the state.
The Dikshit Commission, which was formed to study the feasibility of the proposition, had said Gairsain was not appropriate to become a capital because of its seismic vulnerability.
Uttarakhand became a state of India on November 9, 2000 and those who had spearheaded the movement for statehood had wanted Gairsain to be its capital.