New Delhi: Uttarakhand Chief Minister-
designate Vijay Bahuguna may have served as a high court judge
and made a mark as an advocate but politics is his true
calling as he belongs to a family which has always been
associated with this vocation.
65-year old Bahuguna, who was declared chief minister
of Uttarakhand today evening by Congress, is the son of former
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Hemvati Nandan Bahuguna. His
father was once close to Sanjay Gandhi and a rising star in
Congress till his wings were clipped and he had to quit his
post and the party.
Bahuguna senior was a tall leader of Uttar Pradesh who
had contested and lost the Lok Sabha elections to filmstar
Amitabh Bachchan in Allahabad in 1984. The then Prime Minister
Rajiv Gandhi had at that time brought Bachchan into politics
to vanquish Bahuguna from Allahabad.
Born on February 28, 1947 in Allahabad, Vijay Bahuguna
practised as a lawyer before becoming a judge in the Allahabad
High Court and later the Bombay High Court.
He is a cousin of outgoing BJP chief minister BC
Khanduri and brother of UP Congress Committee chief Rita
Bahuguna, currently Vice-President of Uttarakhand unit
of Congress and a second-term MP representing Tehri Garhwal,
quit as a judge and joined politics under the tutelage of his
In 1991 general elections, Vijay Bahuguna was a
favourite to get a Congress ticket from Pauri-Garhwal
constituency following the death of his father.
At that time, Khanduri was also interested in contesting
Khanduri had gone on record to admit that he would not
have contested from Pauri parliamentary seat had Bahuguna got
As luck had it, Bahuguna did not get the Congress
ticket, following which Khanduri jumped into politics and also
won from Pauri seat.
"I came to politics due to quirk of fate largely due to
denial of ticket by Congress to Bahugana," Khanduri had said.
Thereafter, Vijay Bahuguna faced a string of defeats
from both Tehri and Pauri constituencies.
In 2007, Maharaja of Tehri Manvendra Shah, who had the
distinction of winning Tehri seat for several decades, died
which forced the byeleciton.
Congress again reposed faith in Bahuguna who this time
faced Manujendra Shah, son of Manvendra Shah. Bahuguna won by
a narrow margin.
In 2009, Bahuguna again won the Tehri seat which brought
him in the forefront of politics in Uttarakhand.