Dehradun | Jagran Politics Desk: The hill state of Uttarakhand, where the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) made a leadership change earlier this year, might once again face a political crisis as Chief Minister Tirath Singh Rawat is not a member of the state Legislative Assembly.

Rawat was sworn-in as the Chief Minister of Uttarakhand on March 10 after Trivendra Rawat resigned from his post. He, however, is not a member of the state Legislative Assembly and now has time till September 10 to get elected as an MLA in a bypoll.

However, questions have been raised over conducting a bypoll in Uttarakhand because of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis in the state. Media reports suggest that the election commission is "cautious" over conducting bypolls after the wrath it faced following the assembly polls in four states -- West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Assam and Kerala -- and union territory (UT) of Puducherry.

"At the moment, the commission has not taken a decision but it is definitely assessing the situation…. The Supreme Court direction was for a state election commission and has no bearing on us. No meeting has been scheduled on this matter," a senior EC official told The Telegraph.

While the EC is yet to decide over the bypolls, Rawat on Wednesday flew to Delhi in response to summons from the BJP high command. Sources, quoted by news agency PTI, said that he discussed contesting the bypolls in Uttarakhand with BJP chief JP Nadda and Union Home Minister Amit Shah during his meet.

Currently, two assembly seats are vacant in the state at present including Gangotri in Garhwal region and Haldwani in Kumaon. Speculation is rife about Rawat being fielded from Gangotri to retain the seat which fell vacant in April after the death of sitting BJP MLA Gopal Singh Rawat.

The other seat to fall vacant was Haldwani after the death of Leader of Opposition in Uttarakhand Assembly Indira Hridayesh.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma