Attempts are made to topple Congress led govt. in Rajasthan
NEW DELHI : Attempts are being made to topple its government in Rajasthan through “money power”, the party has alleged, seeking an investigation into the matter by the Anti-Corruption Bureau.
Rajya Sabha elections are due on June 19, in which three seats of Rajasthan are up for election. Senior Congress leaders Randeep Surjewala and KC Venugopal are in the state, where a contingent of MLAs from Gujarat is also housed.
In March, the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh collapsed. In July last year, it lost power in Karnataka, the state it was ruling in alliance with HD Kumaraswamy. In both cases, the BJP gained.
Chief Whip of the Rajasthan assembly, Mahesh Joshi, has written to the chief of the Anti-Corruption Bureau, alleging that efforts are on to destabilise a democratically elected government on the lines of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat.
Without directly naming the BJP, the letter said, “Our MLAs and independents supporting us — attempts are being made to lure them with money power”. Three Rajya Sabha seats of the state are up for election. Two of them are expected to go to the Congress and one to the BJP. The BJP, however, has stirred political waters by putting up two candidates instead of one.
To win, each candidate needs 51 first preference votes are required. For now, the Congress looks comfortable. But the BJP can turn the tables on it if can get the support of 12 Independents, who are currently supporting the Congress.
The Congress has 107 MLAS — six of them were from Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party who changed camps last year. The Rashtriya Lok Dal is part of the government. It also has support of 12 independent MLAs.
The BJP has 72 MLAs and 6 from partners and independents.
Last week, 19 Congress legislators from Gujarat were shifted to a resort in Rajasthan ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections in the state. Over the last months, the Congress lost seven of its MLAs. Three of them resigned recently and there apprehension that others may follow.
Of the four Rajya Sabha seats up for election in Gujarat, the BJP has three and the Congress, one. The Congress has 65 MLAs in Gujarat, some of whom have already been packed off to different resorts. The BJP has 103 members in the 182-member state assembly, where a candidate needs 34 votes to win.
In Madhya Pradesh, where the Congress government lost power earlier this year, an audio clip surfaced yesterday in which Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is purportedly heard claiming that the government was pulled down by the BJP’s central leaders.
The other state where the party lost power was Karnataka. The government led by Congress ally HD Kumaraswamy collapsed in July last year after 16 legislators and two independents supporting it, resigned.