Six former Bahujan Samaj Party MLAs on Saturday moved the Supreme Court, seeking to transfer a petition filed in the Rajasthan High Court against their merger with Congress, ANI reported.
Sandeep Yadav, Wajib Ali, Deepchand Kheria, Lakhan Meena, Jogendra Awana and Rajendra Gudha won the Assembly elections in 2018 and joined the Congress in September last year. The BSP has contested the merger by stating that the local unit of a national party cannot do it and sought an immediate stay on the merger with the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government amid the political turmoil in the state. As per law, parties merge, not legislators, it said.
The court’s order will be crucial as Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot will seek a confidence vote on August 14 to prove the government’s majority after ousted Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot’s revolt. The Gehlot camp has been claiming the support of 102 MLAs, including the Independents, in the 200-member Assembly. Without the BSP MLAs, the numbers will drop to 96. The BJP has 72 MLAs. Gehlot is hoping that the Congress MLAs supporting Pilot, who were camping in BJP-ruled Haryana, would return to the party fold when the Assembly session begins.
On July 28, BSP chief Mayawati had said that her party could have gone to court earlier, but she was waiting for the right time to “teach the Congress and Ashok Gehlot a lesson” for the “theft of MLAs”.