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Himachal political turmoil: 6 Congress MLAs, who cross-voted in Rajya Sabha polls, disqualified HP Politics
Himachal Pradesh Assembly | Photo courtesy: Facebook/Sukhvinder Singh Sukhho

Himachal political turmoil: 6 Congress MLAs, who cross-voted in Rajya Sabha polls, disqualified

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 29 Feb 2024, 12:54 pm

Shimla/IBNS: Six Congress MLAs, who cross-voted in the Rajya Sabha elections in favour of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), were disqualified by the Assembly Speaker on Thursday, media reports said.

Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania disqualified Congress MLAs, namely, Rajinder Rana, Sudhir Sharma, Inder Dutt Lakhanpal, Devinder Kumar Bhutoo, Ravi Thakur, and Chetanya Sharma, who reportedly spent the night at BJP-ruled Haryana.

They were disqualified for violating the anti-defection law, the Speaker cited.

On Wednesday, Pathania suspended 15 BJP MLAs including former Chief Minister Jairam Thakur from the House due to alleged misconduct.

The Budget was passed in the House with voice votes.

Without the six MLAs, Congress' number tumbles to 34 while BJP has 25 lawmakers.

Congress plunges into crisis

Despite being in power, the Sukhvinder Sukhu-led Congress government faced trouble on Tuesday after six ruling party MLAs cross-voted in favour of the BJP, which has only 25 MLAs in the 68-member assembly.

Declaring the victory of the BJP candidate, Harsh Mahajan, Leader of the Opposition, Jairam Thakur said: "Despite having such a huge majority, the Congress has lost the Rajya Sabha election in Himachal Pradesh.

"I want to congratulate Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP President JP Nadda and (Home Minister) Amit Shah. We pulled off a victory when our chances seemed very low."

As the Congress has 40 MLAs in the Assembly, its candidate, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, was expected to win comfortably.

During voting on Tuesday, six Congress MLAs and three Independents supporting the government cast their ballots for the BJP.

Helped by six Congress MLAs and three Independents, the BJP secured 34 ballots for Mahajan, reducing the votes for Singhvi to the same number. The winner was then decided through a draw of lots, which went in Mahajan's favour.

Accusing BJP of taking an effort to topple the government, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra posted on X, "In democracy, the general public has the right to choose the government of their choice. The people of Himachal used this right and formed the Congress government with a clear majority. But BJP wants to crush this right of the people of Himachal by misusing the money power, power of agencies and power of the Centre.

"The way BJP is using government security and machinery for this purpose is unprecedented in the history of the country. If a party with 25 MLAs is challenging the majority of 43 MLAs, then it clearly means that it is dependent on horse-trading of representatives."

"This attitude of theirs is unethical and unconstitutional. The people of Himachal and the country are watching everything. The BJP, which did not stand with the people of the state during the natural disaster, now wants to push the state into political disaster."


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