The Telegraph
 
 
IN TODAY'S PAPER
CITY NEWSLINES
 
 
ARCHIVES
Since 1st March, 1999
 
THE TELEGRAPH
 
 
Email This Page
Governor blow to UP rebels

Lucknow, June 11: Governor Vishnu Kant Shastri has finally broken his silence over political developments in Uttar Pradesh after withdrawal of the 14-member Rashtriya Lok Dal from the BSP-led ruling coalition.

An official communiqué from the Raj Bhavan said the combined Opposition, which claims to have the numbers to dislodge the Mayavati government, had failed to satisfy the Governor.

“I am not convinced that the government has been reduced to a minority. Therefore, the question of its dismissal does not arise,” Shastri’s two-page statement said.

The statement comes as a breather for chief minister Mayavati, who returns from her 15-day foreign trip tomorrow.

But the Opposition, which has closed its ranks for the first time after the BJP-BSP government was installed last May, has taken umbrage at the Governor’s statement.

“The only test for majority or minority of a government is in the House. The Governor or anybody cannot give a certificate to any government on its own and his statement is against parliamentary traditions,” Samajwadi Party state chief Ram Sharan Das said.

Congress legislature party leader Pramod Tewari pointed out that the Governor had invited Mayavati to form a government after she had shown letters of support from the BJP and the Rashtriya Lok Dal legislators.

“When one of the major partners in the coalition has withdrawn support, he should have convened a session in the House and asked Mayavati to prove her majority instead of issuing her an uncalled-for certificate,” Tewari said.

Rashtriya Kranti Party leader Kalyan Singh claimed that Shastri’s statement was timed to give Mayavati opportunity for horse-trading. “The combined Opposition has more than the required strength in the House of 402, but the Governor is trying to save the government,” he said.

But dismissing Singh’s claim, BJP legislature party leader Lalji Tandon said there was no dissidence in his party and that the Opposition’s propaganda about a split was baseless.

“We are in touch with some RLD legislators and there can be an addition in the ruling coalition soon,” he said.

To pre-empt the Opposition from claiming support of some BJP MLAs, Tandon has submitted a memorandum to Shastri asking him to “verify” the loyalties of the MLAs whose support the Opposition claims.

The Opposition has claimed that the RLD MLAs were being kept out of the state as there was a threat to their lives.

BJP sources said at least five RLD legislators were ready to cross the floor.

Political observers feel that the combined Opposition will have to cause a split in either the BJP or the BSP to win the number game as the ruling coalition enjoyed the support of 212 MLAs in the House of 402 even without the RLD.

To pre-empt the rival camp from claiming support of a group of BJP MLAs, Lalji Tandon has already submitted a memorandum to the Governor demanding that he should not accept any such claim on face value, rather “verify” their loyalties from the MLAs whose support the Opposition claims.

Former RLD vice-president Rameshwar Singh — who recently floated Lok Dal (Charan Singh) after parting of ways with Ajit Singh — said the RLD MLAs were part of the newly-formed group and were “unlawfully” kept away from their homes by RLD chief Ajit Singh.

After spending some days in Bhopal, Panchmarhi and Srinagar, 11 RLD legislators are now in Shimla apparently to stave off any poaching attempt.

According to Ajit Singh: “RLD legislators are under tremendous pressure. They fear they will be implicated in false cases by Mayavati government. That is why they are staying away from Uttar Pradesh.”

He also claimed that “there will be no split in the RLD and the decision to withdraw support to the Mayavati government was unanimous”.

Political observers feel that the combined Opposition will have to cause a split in either the BJP or the BSP to win the number game as the ruling coalition enjoyed the support of 212 MLAs in the House of 402 even without the RLD.

To pre-empt the rival camp from claiming support of a group of BJP MLAs, Lalji Tandon has already submitted a memorandum to the Governor demanding that he should not accept any such claim on face value, rather “verify” their loyalties from the MLAs whose support the Opposition claims.

Top
Email This Page