Three former BJP Chief Ministers B C Khanduri, Bhagat Singh Koshiyari and Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank besides Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly Ajay Bhatt, state BJP chief Tirath Singh Rawat and party MP Tarun Vijay were invited to the banquet hosted in honour of Prince Charles and his wife Camilla Parker Bowles last night.
However, all of them decided not to attend the event in view of the recent calamity in the state in which hundreds perished and thousands went missing. State BJP chief Rawat said, "The party is thankful to the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall for their visit to Uttarakhand. But in a state where people are yet to recover from the effects of the colossal tragedy, a simpler function with less pomp could have been held in their honour."
BJP: Organising a lavish royal banquet in such times could have been avoided
He said, "We feel that organising a lavish royal banquet in such times could have been avoided." The state BJP chief said the party leaders' decision not to attend the lavish feast was out of sympathy with the people of the state who have suffered so much in the recent calamity in Uttarakhand.
Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna held a sumptuous dinner last night at the palatial Hotel Ananda at Narendra Nagar in honour of the royal couple who began their extensive nine-day India tour with Uttarakhand on November 6.
When Rawat was asked why BJP MP from Tehri Mala Rajya Laxmi Shah attended the feast, he said Hotel Ananda is housed in one of the wings of the erstwhile Tehri royal palace which is her residence and her presence at the feast was only natural.