Himachal Assembly Speaker Expels 15 BJP MLAs Amid Crisis For Ruling Congress

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Himachal Assembly Speaker Expels 15 BJP MLAs Amid Crisis For Ruling Congress

Himachal assembly has expelled 15 BJP MLAs amid the crisis for the ruling Congress

New Delhi:

Congress-ruled Himachal Pradesh is on the brink with the Opposition BJP demanding a test of strength after winning the state’s lone Rajya Sabha seat due to cross-voting by Congress MLAs. The assembly speaker today expelled 15 BJP MLAs over slogan-shouting and alleged misconduct. Six Congress MLAs cross-voted in favour of the BJP in the Rajya Sabha election.

The Speaker today took the decision to expel the 15 BJP MLAs just as the Budget session of the assembly was about to start. They allegedly shouted slogans inside the chamber of the Speaker, Kuldeep Singh Pathania.

The expelled BJP MLAs are Jairam Thakur, Vipin Singh Parmar, Randheer Sharma, Lokender Kumar, Vinod Kumar, Hans Raj, Janak Raj, Balbir Verma, Trilok Jamwal, Surender Shori, Deep Raj, Puran Thakur, Inder Singh Gandhi, Dileep Thakur, and Inder Singh Gandhi.

Jairam Thakur earlier today raised concerns they would be expelled. “We are apprehensive that Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania might suspend the BJP MLAs so that the budget can be passed in the Vidhan Sabha,” Mr Thakur told reporters, news agency PTI reported.

The BJP yesterday won the only Rajya Sabha seat in Himachal Pradesh with its candidate Harsh Mahajan defeating Congress’s Abhishek Manu Singhvi due to cross-voting by six MLAs of the ruling Congress.

Mr Thakur said the Rajya Sabha election made it clear the Congress government was in a minority, and demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu.

The decision of Himachal Pradesh minister Vikramaditya Singh to resign also brought to the fore cracks in the party, which is now scrambling to keep its flock intact to prevent the fall of its government.

Vikramaditya Singh is the son of former Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and an MLA from Shimla Rural.

The Himachal Pradesh BJP has already sought the intervention of Governor Shiv Pratap Shukla to take the crisis in the state’s ruling party to a conclusive end.

The Congress has 40 MLAs and the BJP 25 in the 68-member assembly. The remaining three seats are held by independents.

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