Jaipur: Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, who was a practising magician in his youth and used to hold magic shows with his father, showed political wizardry by luring six Bahujan Samaj Party's legislators to join the Congress en block.
On Monday late evening, Gehlot in a political surgical strike was successful in convincing the six BSP MLAs to join the Congress by merging the BSP with the Congress.
The Speaker, C P Joshi, rushed to the Assembly in the late evening and accepted the formal requests in the form of a joint letter addressed to the Speaker urging him to grant his approval to merge the party with the Congress.
This came as a big shock to the Mayawati-led party. The BSP had officially given its support to the Congress-led government after the December 2018 elections, but it was from outside only and the BSP supremo did not allow the BSP MLAs to join the government.
In December 2018, the Congress took the support of the Rashtriya Lok Dal's lone member to form the government. Now the party is sitting pretty with their numbers swelling to 107 in a House of 200.
The ruling Congress had 101 members along with the RLD member's support in the House. The Congress was also enjoying the support of the 12 Independents.
CP Joshi after approving the merger of the BSP with the Congress said he was acting according to the legislative laws and the BSP members presented themselves individually to express their desire to merge the party with the Congress.
By Prakash Bhandari