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SC issues notice to Rajasthan Assembly Speaker on pleas against merger of 6 BSP MLAs with Cong

The Supreme Court Thursday issued notice to Rajasthan Assembly Speaker, others on two separate pleas against the merger of all six BSP MLAs into the ruling Congress legislature party in the state.

A bench of Justices S Abdul Nazeer and K M Joseph, in the proceedings conducted through video conferencing,  also issued notices to the Assembly secretary and all the six MlAs who defected and merged with the Congress.

The court’s decision came on appeals by the BSP and BJP MLA Madan Dilawar against the Rajasthan High Court which had asked the Assembly Speaker to decide on their disqualification within three months.

On August 24, 2019,  the High Court had set aside the order of the Speaker who allowed the six MLAs to join the Congress party. The HC order had cited that the go-ahead by Speaker CP Joshi does not come under the category of ‘decision’ and set aside Dilawar’s plea urging the court to declare the merger ‘illegal’.

Six MLAs – Sandeep Yadav, Wajib Ali, Deepchand Kheria, Lakhan Meena, Jogendra Awana, and Rajendra Gudha – elected on BSP ticket, had later merged their group with the Congress Legislature Party in the state Assembly. The MLAs submitted that they were elected on a BSP ticket in the Rajasthan polls held on December 7, 2018. “Subsequently, all the six persons, being the entire Legislative Party of the BSP merged with the Legislature Party of the Indian National Congress, and the same came to be recognised by the Order of the Hon’ble Speaker…on 18.09.2019,” they stated.

The merger was a boost to Ashok Gehlot-led state government as the tally of the Congress increased to over 100 in the house of 200 MLAs.

(With inputs from PTI)

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