Dehra Dun: Union Minister of state for Agriculture and Parliamentary Affairs Harish Rawat today asked Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna to elevate the status of MLA Furkan Ahmed to Chief Parliamentary Secretary and give him independent charge of departments in order to instill a sense of involvement among the minorities.
"I urge the Congress leadership and Chief Minister to elevate the status of Ahmed to chief parliamentary secretary and give him independent charge of minority welfare and industrial development departments," Rawat told reporters here.
He added that such steps were necessary to instill a sense of involvement among minorities.
Ahmed, a Rawat loyalist, is an MLA from Piran Kaliyar in Haridwar. As parliamentary secretary, he is attached with the Chief Minister and holds the charge of minority welfare and industrial development in his office.
Rawat also pointed out that Congress had also promised in its election manifesto that it would give due representation to minorities in the government.
"We could not give representation to the minorities (in the government) as everybody knows the circumstances under which the government was formed."
Rawat, however, thanked Bahuguna for appointing Kunwar Pranav Singh Champion, an MLA from Khanpur, as Chairman of Uttarakhand Forest Development Corporation and said the move would help removing the resentment of party workers in Haridwar, who were demanding representation for their district.
When asked to comment on the appeal of Bahuguna to party leaders and workers not to rush to Sitarganj for campaigning for July 8 Assembly by-election, Rawat said he appealed to the Chief Minister to allow him to visit the area.
"I appeal to the Chief Minister to allow me to go to Sitarganj," he said.