Although there has been a long struggle for Uttarakhand, its grossly incorrect that thousands dies, 10s of people died, in various places and various protests. The day when protest started for Uttarakhand to secede from Uttar Pradesh and it became particularly intense. The fact is although there was a long demand for separate state but the support for that was never great before 1990 and it was reflected in all but few candidates of Uttarakhand Kranti Dal losing deposit in elections. It appeared that for most of the people this desire of separation was latent even though culturally these 2 regions Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand were so different and it was clear case of getting statehood. I think this could be because politically it was never alienated. At least Brahmin community of Uttarakhand managed to penetrate deep into politics of Uttar Pradesh even though the region was 1/20 in terms of population. It is to note that first Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh was from Uttarakhand and there were total 3 Chief Ministers from hills in Uttar Pradesh.
This movement intensified with Mandal commission when 27% reservation for OBCs was implemented in UP. Uttarakhand having only 4% in OBC categories fiercely opposed it. It meant a lot of local jobs going to plains. Movement started building, and after September 1994 when police of Mulayam Singh Yadav government allegedly attacked buses carrying people and raped several women, all in but tiny minority of people came in support of separate state. Uttarakhand erupted in protest. Schools, offices were closed for next 4 months. By next year Central government announced that new state will be formed. Finally, it took 5 more years for state to be formed.
This chain of events are termed to be one of the best things happened to people of the state, for most part. Per capita income at the time of division from UP was 1.5 times that of UP which is now roughly 3 times that of UP, industrialization has drastically increased. However corruption has increased many folds.