Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Thursday accused Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) of creating unnecessary fuss over its six MLAs merging with the Congress in the state and claimed that BSP boss Mayawati was acting under pressure from the BJP.
His statement came hours after the Rajasthan high court issued notices to the Speaker, assembly secretary and the six MLAs, who had joined the Congress from BSP in September 2019. The court issued the notices on a petition by the BSP seeking disqualification of these MLAs.
“With two-third majority, a party can merge and defect, here all six merged into Congress…Mayawati’s complaint is not justified as all six MLAs joined the Congress. I believe she is making statements on directions of the BJP. The way BJP is misusing CBI, ED, IT to threaten all has never been seen. Mayawati is also fearful and is making statements under pressure,” Gehlot said outside the Fairmont hotel on the outskirts of Jaipur, where MLAs loyal to him have been camping.
The BSP said Gehlot’s comments were baseless. BSP state president Bhagwan Singh Baba said the merger of six MLAs was illegal as a national party cannot be merged at state level without the approval of the party chief.
“The CM allegations are baseless. The BSP chief had conveyed her annoyance twice as Gehlot poached our MLAs. It’s not the first time but in 2008 when they first poached, we had approached court and the Speaker. Then, the BSP was supporting the Congress at the Centre and there was no BJP at the Centre. Mayawati had stated that Gehlot wants to wipe out BSP in Rajasthan,” he said.