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The Uttarakhand movement refers to the events of statehood activism within the state Uttar Pradesh which ultimately resulted in the formation of Uttarakhand, India as a separate state. Uttarakhand became a state on 9 November 2000. The formation of Uttarakhand was achieved after a long struggle and many sacrifices. The demand to make Uttarakhand a state was first raised at a special session of the Indian National Congress held in Srinagar on 5-6 May 1938. The demand gradually strengthened following a series of events. In 1994, the demand for a separate state eventually took the form of mass movement that resulted in the formation of India's 27th state by 2000.

History

The important dates and events that played a key role in the struggle for the formation of the Uttarakhand state are:

Events of the movement

There were several violent incidents in the Uttarakhand movement which are:

Khatima firing case

On 1 September 1994, police opened fire on activists that resulted in the death of seven activists. This resulted in anger and mass agitation of people and youth Students. Vijay Joshi S/o BB Joshi from Tanakpur intensified till 1995 and led a mass rally from Kumaon hills, Muzaffarnagar, Kotdwar to Delhi.

Mussoorie firing case

On 2 September 1994, to protest against the police action in the Khatima firing, a silent march was taken out in Mussoorie. At Jhulaghar, the constabulary opened fire on unarmed protestors leading to the death of Belmati Chauhan, Hansa Dhanai, Balbir Singh, Rai Singh Bangari, Madan Mamgain and Dhanpat Singh and Circle Officer Uma Kant Tripathi. Apart from them, some eighteen people were treated for bullet injuries.

Rampur Tiraha (Muzaffarnagar) firing case

Main article: Rampur Tiraha firing case

The activists, part of the agitation for the separate state of Uttarakhand, were going to Delhi to stage a dharna, a sit-in protest at Raj Ghat on Gandhi Jayanti. The following day, when alleged unprovoked police firing during the night of 1 October led to the death of six activists, and some women were allegedly brutally raped and molested in the ensuing melee. Mulayam Singh Yadav was Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh when the incident occurred. Eight policemen, including three Inspectors were proven guilty and prosecuted in the resulting case.[4]

Dehradun firing case

The incident occurred on 3 October 1994 in Muzaffarnagar near Dehradun. The people were expected to be fierce. The situation following the funeral of Martyr Late Ravindra Rawat resulted in fierce battles between the police and protesters in the entire Dehradun. The police who were already prepared to suppress the uprising in any eventuality resorted to firing, which killed three people.

Late Rajesh Rawat's death was alleged to have been a result of firing from the house of then Samajwadi Party leader Suryakant Dhasmana.

Kotdwar case

On 3 October 1994, the whole of Uttarakhand was boiled in protest against the Rampur Tiraha incident and the police administration was ready to suppress it by any means. In this episode, there was also a movement in Kotdwar, in which two agitators were beaten to death by policemen with rifle butt strokes and sticks.[1]

Nainital firing case

The protest was at its peak in Nainital too, but due to its leadership being in the hands of intellectuals, the police could not do anything, but they took out their anger on Pratap Singh, who worked in Hotel Pacific. RAF soldiers pulled him from the hotel and when he ran towards the hotel Meghdoot to escape, he was shot in the neck and killed.

Sriyantra Tapu (Srinagar) case

Activists started fast unto death on 7 November 1994, at Sriyantra Tapu situated near Srinagar, against these repressive actions and for the demand for the formation of a new state Uttarakhand. On 10 November 1994, the police climbed the island and caused havoc. Many people were injured badly. In the series of events, police attacked two young men using the lathi and hit them with the butt strokes of their guns. Police then threw those men into the river Alaknanda and hit them repeatedly with stones, resulting in the death of both activists.

Their bodies were not recovered by police for 15 days and Government agencies did not make any attempt to find the bodies. This information got spread and reached out to the chairman of the ex-serviceman group (Virendra Prasad Kukshal). When he heard about the incident he began fast unto death for 7 days, due to this Government agencies started the search and recovered the bodies. On 14 November 1994 dead bodies of the two martyrs were found floating in the Alaknanda river near Bagwan.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Rajiv Srivastava (17 November 2011). "Hill state was carved out after 70 yrs of struggle | Lucknow News". The Times of India. Retrieved 4 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Angry Hills: An Uttarakhand state of mind". November 1994.
  3. ^ "Parties mum on raising OBC quota in govt jobs". 28 January 2015.
  4. ^ "Rampur Tiraha firing case". english.samaylive.com. Retrieved 4 January 2021.