The Bahujan Samaj Party on Wednesday moved the Rajasthan High Court challenging the merger of six of its MLAs with the Congress, PTI reported. Sandeep Yadav, Wajib Ali, Deepchand Kheria, Lakhan Meena, Jogendra Awana and Rajendra Gudha, who had contested and won the 2018 Assembly elections on Bahujan Samaj Party tickets, tied up with the Congress in September last year.
“We have today filed a writ petition in the high court against the merger of BSP MLAs with Congress,” Rajasthan Bahujan Samaj Party chief Bhagwan Singh Baba said.
The defection of the legislators to the Congress had been a boost for the Ashok Gehlot government’s numbers. After the revolt by former Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot along with some MLAs, the party has 107 of the 200 seats in the Rajasthan Assembly.
On Tuesday, Bahujan Samaj Party President Mayawati had said that her party will move the Supreme Court against the defections “to teach Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot’s government a lesson”. “BSP could have gone to the court earlier too but we were looking for a time to teach the Congress party and Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot a lesson,” Mayawati said. “We will not let this matter slide.”
The BSP chief also lashed out at the Congress for accusing her of colluding with the Bharatiya Janata Party to oust its government in Rajasthan. “The Congress itself carried out the act which they now call ‘theft’, while taking away six BSP legislators,” she said. “It is unconstitutional, immoral and against people’s mandate. Now they are raising a hue and cry.”
Mayawati had said that she will cancel the party membership of the six legislators if they do not vote against the Congress in case of a floor test in the Assembly.
The Congress government in Rajasthan is facing a threat of collapse after Pilot rebelled against Gehlot and took the MLAs on his side to Delhi earlier this month. Pilot was sacked as the Rajasthan deputy chief minister and the Congress’ state unit chief on July 14. The next day, Assembly Speaker CP Joshi sent disqualification notices to Pilot and 18 other legislators.
The Rajasthan Cabinet met again on Tuesday to discuss the suggestions made by Governor Kalraj Mishra for convening a session of the state Assembly. Mishra had on Monday agreed to hold the session if the government gave a 21-day notice to the legislators due to the coronavirus outbreak.