In a major jolt to Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in Rajasthan, all six MLAs of the party on Monday (September 16) night submitted a letter to the state Assembly Speaker to merge the legislative party with the Congress.
“The BSP MLAs met me and handed their letter about this,” Speaker CP Joshi said.
MLAs Rajendra Singh Gudha, Jogendra Singh Awana, Wajib Ali, Lakhan Singh Meena, Sandeep Yadav and Deepchand said they were merging their legislative party with the Congress.
“All six of us have formally submitted our papers. There were a lot of challenges. On one hand we are supporting their government and on the other we are contesting against them in the parliament election,” ANI quoted dissident BSP MLA Joginder Singh Awana as saying.
“So considering the development of our constituencies and welfare of the people of our state we have taken this step,” he added.
Joginder Singh Awana: So considering the development of our constituencies and welfare of the people of our state we have taken this step. https://t.co/H4qrF1nja7
— ANI (@ANI) September 16, 2019
“All the six BSP MLAs were in constant touch with Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and today they have come into the fold of the Congress,” a Congress leader said.
The Rajasthan Assembly has 200 seats. The Congress has 100 MLAs and its ally Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) has one MLA, giving it the majority to run the government. The Congress has also the outside support of 12 out of total 13 independent MLAs. Two seats are vacant.
In 2009, during Gehlot’s earlier tenure, all the six BSP MLAs had also defected to the Congress. That time, the government was five short of a clear majority.