Dehradun: Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat today slammed the BJP-led government at the Centre for threatening to impose President’s Rule in the state.
He said that the ‘BJP used money and power to destabilise the democratically elected government’. “The BJP is trying to murder democracy and the Constitution,” he told media here.
“I condemn this threat by the BJP. The demand to remove the Governor is completely condemnable,” he said.
“We have decided that we will take this issue to the public... My DNA is the DNA of the people, it is not an imported DNA like others,” he added.
“If it’s an internal problem of Congress, then why were the big brass of RSS and BJP here on 17th & 18th,” Rawat further said.
He also attacked Prime Minister Modi and BJP president Amit Shah for the political crisis in the state saying ‘it was an unholy alliance to derail the process of development in the hilly state’.
The Dehradun district administration has imposed Section 144 to prevent potential flare-ups between rival political groups.
Meanwhile, suspense continued over the fate of the nine rebel Congress MLAs ahead of the trial of strength in Uttarakhand Assembly as lawyers of these legislators today met Speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal in a last ditch attempt to prevent action against them.
About half-a-dozen lawyers met Kunjwal in his chamber in the state Assembly seeking personal hearing and more evidence in support of the charges levelled against the MLAs in the disqualification notice served to them by the Speaker just a day after trouble erupted in the state assembly on March 18.
It was their second meeting with the Speaker in two days. They had met him yesterday seeking personal hearing in the matter, a request turned down by the Speaker.
According to sources, replies to show cause notices issued to the MLAs are being examined and consultations are being held with legal experts on the issue. Citing security reasons, the entry of mediapersons is not being allowed in the premises.
Chief Minister Harish Rawat and the Speaker held a prolonged meeting which went late into the night at the latter's residence. However, sources in the CMO said notification disqualifying the rebel MLAs is yet to be issued.
Disqualification of the rebel MLAs, which is being considered almost a certainty in political circles here, will deprive them of the right to vote against Harish Rawat government which is slated to go for a floor test tomorrow in the state assembly.
It will reduce the effective strength of the House from 70 to 61 and the simple majority figure from 36 to 31 which is likely to make Chief Minister Rawat's task easier. Rawat is left with 27 Congress MLAs after nine revolted against him. He also has the support of the six-member PDF which take the tally to 33, two more than the simple majority mark in the House.
BJP, on the other hand, has 28 MLAs of its own and nine of Congress who if disqualified will be of no use to it at the time of voting in the state assembly.
However, it claims at least five more MLAs on the other side are only waiting to cross over to its side.
BJP sources said state BJP MLAs, who were travelling to various places like Delhi, Gurgaon and Jaipur, are expected to reach Dehradun by tonight.