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UP heads for political drama as four SP MLAs quit, rejoin BSP

Written by: Staff
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Lucknow, Mar 1 (UNI) Four legislators in Uttar Pradesh, two of them Ministers in the Mulayam Singh Yadav government, today met the Governor, expressing willingness to rejoin BSP.

The action of the four MLAs came a day after the Allahabad High Court gave 2-1 verdict on 40 rebel BSP MLAs who had joined the Samajwadi Party. They handed over to the Governor, a letter stating they belonged to BSP.

But Assembly Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey took strong exception of the meeting and said they could attract disqualification under Para VI of Xth Schedule of the Constitution.

He also said that the process of hearing on recognition of the Loktantrik Bahujan Dal -- as the rebels have been identified before their merger with SP -- would commence soon.

The two Ministers of state-- Jaiveer Singh and Surendra Vikram Singh, made the announcement at the Raj Bhawan here after submitting their resignation from the ministerial assignment to Governor T V Rajeswar. They also announced they were rejoining the BSP, which they quit in 2003.

Accompanied by the BSP legislature party leader Swami Prasad Maurya and two other MLAs, Dharam Pal Singh and Ramji Shukla, they also alleged before the media that they had also demanded security in view of the threat to their lives they had received from the ruling party.

Among the two other MLAs, Mr Dharam Pal Singh headed the UP State Poultry and Livestock Corporation with the status of Minister of State, also resigned from the job.

Mr Surendra Vikram Singh, the Minister of State for Food and Civil Supplies, in a letter to the Governor, alleged that a senior cabinet minister close to the chief minister had threatened him with dire consequences, after Mr Singh informed CM about his decision of quitting the government and the party. He further said that he feared that the government could harrass him and his family members by lodging fake cases.

The four are among the 40 rebel BSP MLAs in whose case the three judge bench of the Allahabad High Court in Lucknow had passed a 2-1 verdict yesterday. The two Ministers are among 18 in the Council of Ministers from this group of 40.

Interacting with newspersons, Mr Maurya claimed that many other MLAs of the 40 legislators were in touch with him and soon the number of such MLAs joining the BSP will reach 28. Mr Maurya further claimed that another of the 40 MLAs, Brijendra Pratap Singh, who is also a minister in the Mulayam Singh government, will rejoin the party soon.

In another related development, a delegation of Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee also met the Governor and sought his intevention in view of yesterday's HC order.

The delegation led by UPCC president Salman Khurshid, accompanied by Congress Legislature Party leader Pramod Tiwari met the Governor and requested him to take action in view of the court order.

''The court order specifically said that the 40 rebel BSP MLAs who had joined Samajwadi Party, belonged to BSP. This has amounted to a constitutional crisis as 18 of them are Ministers in the SP-led government in Uttar Pradesh,'' UP Congress President Salman Khurshid told reporters at the Rajbhawan.

Coincidentally, the Congress leaders had reached Rajbhawan immediately after the four MLAs had met the Governor and gave him the letter stating they now belonged to BSP.

Mr Khurshid and Mr Tiwari said that it was an inordinate situation where the original BSP members were the Ministers in Samajwadi Party government. ''Urgent action in this regard is required and that is why we have come here to meet the Governor,'' they said.

The Congress leaders went on to say ''now Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav has no moral right to remain in the saddle and he should resign immediately.'' In reply to a question, the Congress leaders said that the Governor had assured him to take appropriate action after going through the legal aspects in this regard.

UNI SB/MB ARS LR KN2311

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