DEHRADUN: Gen Bipin Rawat’s younger brother Col (retd) Vijay Rawat, who recently joined the BJP, on Sunday said he is not contesting the upcoming assembly polls in Uttarakhand.
Col Rawat said he was asked by party leaders to contest but he said no to them.
Asked what if they insist on fielding him, he said 99 per cent chances are that he would politely refuse.
“I am not contesting the polls. I am interested only in serving the people of Uttarakhand,” Col Rawat said in an interview to PTI.
Joining the BJP less than a month ahead of the state assembly polls had given rise to speculation in the media that he might be given a ticket by the party.
“My purpose behind joining the BJP was serving people and not holding an office or a post. During my 34 years in the Army I was transferred to different places. I didn’t get a chance to serve people of my own state. Now that I am retired I can do that,” he said.
“I don’t want to be tied up to a post. I want to serve people freely,” he said.
Col Rawat, who lives in Jaipur after his retirement five years ago, said Uttarakhand’s tourism potential can be utilised for generating employment for locals at their homes and stop migration from the hills.
“With a growing tendency among people living in urban areas to take a break and spend a holiday in the unpolluted atmosphere of the hills, homestay facilities introduced by the state government have a huge employment generation potential,” he said.
Yoga, trekking and other adventure sports is another area in which there are self-employment opportunities for locals in Uttarakhand, he said.
Col Rawat said even CDS Rawat, who died in a helicopter crash, was very passionate about serving the people of Uttarakhand from outside politics.
“My elder brother had specific development plans ready for different areas of the state including Almora and Ranikhet,” he said, adding he doesn’t want to talk about him much as thinking about his demise makes him distraught.
CDS Rawat and 13 others were killed in a helicopter crash in Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on December 8 last year.