A Big Set Back To 6 Rebel MLAs As SC Refuses To Stay Himachal Speaker’s Disqualification Order

A Big Set Back To 6 Rebel MLAs As SC Refuses To Stay Himachal Speaker’s Disqualification Order

The disqualified MLAs will neither have right to participate in the assembly proceedings nor they can exercise their authority to vote in Vidhan Sabha.

KS TomarUpdated: Monday, March 18, 2024, 10:21 PM IST
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Supreme Court of India | File

Supreme Court refused to give a relief to six congress MLAs who were disqualified by Himachal speaker, Kudeep Singh Pathania under anti defection law on Feb 29 for violation of the party whip on cut motion of annual budget 2024-25 in the state assembly on Feb 28.

The disqualified MLAs will neither have right to participate in the assembly proceedings nor they can exercise their authority to vote in Vidhan Sabha. SC will decide May 6 about the holding of by polls with Lok Sabha polls which has been notified by election commission of India. The process of the nomination for lok Sabha will start w.i.e. May 7 in Himachal as polling will be held on June 1st .The election commission had clubbed by polls with Lok Sabha date in Himachal which will be finally decided by SC on May 6.

An immediate fall out of the verdict will be twofold. First, it will help Sukhvinder Singh ‘Sukhu’ government in Himachal to weather the storm for 49 days i.e. next hearing of SC and it will continue to enjoy a majority status .An effective strength of Congress MLAs has been reduced from 40 to 34 after the disqualification of six MLAs. Second, BJP is having 25 MLAs and three independents are also supporting the party but an exclusion of six MLAs will reduce the opposition strength to 31 only in the house of 62.

  Due to assurance reportedly given by the BJP high command to give party tickets to rebel MLAs, there is discontentment amongst the defeated leaders of the party who might not get chance in next assembly polls as defectors will rule the roost hence some of them may contest as an independent candidates. But BJP leaders claim that high command has got capacity to handle such situation hence will violate the party discipline.

 Center has provided ‘Y” category security to six disqualified MLAs and they were brought under the security cover of CRPF and Haryana police to Vidhan Sabha on Feb. 28 to provide an opportunity to them to indulge in cross voting which is an evidence of active involvement of the BJP in toppling game. The congress rebels are under the supervision and control of BJP hence Supreme Court’s adverse verdict about their disqualification will make a lot of difference as they are poised to join BJP anytime.

In the final assessment, Himachal has been currently pushed into a phase of instability and uncertainty as SC will decide about real issue of upholding or rejecting the decision of Himachal speaker about disqualification of six MLAs on May 6 which means temporary retrieve to Sukhu government.

(Writer is political analyst and senior journalist based in Shimla)

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