All the six MLAs of the Bahujan Samaj Party in Rajasthan have given a letter late last night to speaker CP Joshi, requesting him to merge their legislative party with the Congress. Speaker Joshi has informed PTI about the letter.
As per reports, the MLAs are Rajendra Singh Gudha, Jogendra Singh Awana, Wajib Ali, Lakhan Singh Meena, Sandeep Yadav and Deepchand. The MLAs have decided to merge their legislative party in the assembly with the Congress. A congress leader has stated that all the six MLAs were in contact with Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot and have now decided to come into the Congress fold.
All six #BSP MLAs in #Rajasthan to merge with ruling Congress. Late night they gave the merger letter to Speaker @drcpjoshi who confirmed to TOI about receiving it. Congress now has 106 MLAs + one ally MLA in the House of 199 (one seat vacant).
CM @ashokgehlot51 has repeated 2009 pic.twitter.com/iQcNSlaTI6
— Bhanu Pratap Singh (@BhanupratapsTOI) September 16, 2019
There are 200 seats in the Rajasthan assembly. Congress holds 100 of them. With the support of 1 MLA from the Rashtriya Lok Dal, and the outside support of 12 out of 13 independent MLAs, Congress has the majority.
It is notable here that all the six BSP MLAs had also defected to Congress during Ashok Gehlot’s earlier tenure in 2009.
After the 2018 assembly elections in Rajasthan, BSP supremo Mayawati had declared that her party will stay out of government but will give outside support. Mayawati had supported Congress in Madhya Pradesh too. The BJP has 72 MLAs in Rajasthan.
One of the MLAs Jogendra Singh stated that the MLAs were in a dilemma because on one hand, they were to support the government at the state level and on the other, they had to fight against them during the general elections. He added that the BSP MLAs have taken this step keeping the welfare of their respective constituencies in mind.
State BSP chief Sitaram Meghwal and leader Dharmveer Ashok have stated that they had no idea about the MLAs joining Congress.