Himachal Pradesh speaker suspends 15 BJP MLAs


PTI, Feb 28, 2024, 1:36 PM IST

Himachal Pradesh Assembly Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania (Credit: ANI)

Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Assembly Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania on Wednesday suspended 15 BJP MLAs, including Leader of Opposition Jai Ram Thakur, and adjourned the House.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Harshwardhan Chauhan moved the motion, seeking the suspension of the BJP members for allegedly disrespecting the speaker and misbehaving with him.

To ensure smooth running of the House, these MLAs should be suspended, Chauhan said as the resolution was passed by a voice vote.

The BJP members, however, refused to leave, following which, the speaker adjourned the House till 12 pm amid uproarious scenes.

Apart from Thakur, the suspended MLAs are Vipin Parmar, Vinod Kumar, Hans Raj, Janak Raj, Balbir Verma, Trilok Jamwal, Deep Raj, Surinder Shouri, Puran Thakur, Inder Singh Gandhi, Dilip Thakur, Randhir Sharma, Lokender Kumar, and Ranvir Singh.

“We are apprehensive that Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania might suspend the BJP MLAs so that the budget can be passed in the Vidhan Sabha,” Thakur told reporters earlier in the morning.

He said the Rajya Sabha election had made it clear that the Congress government was in the minority and demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu.

The move comes a day after the BJP on Tuesday won the state’s lone Rajya Sabha seat with its candidate Harsh Mahajan defeating Congress stalwart Abhishek Manu Singhvi due to cross-voting by MLAs of the state’s ruling Congress party.

Meanwhile, the six Congress MLAs and three independent legislators, who voted for the BJP candidate in the Rajya Sabha polls in Himachal Pradesh, reached the state Assembly on Wednesday.

The MLAs had arrived in BJP-ruled Haryana from Shimla on Tuesday after casting their votes in the Rajya Sabha polls and spent the night in a hotel in Panchkula. On Wednesday morning, they left in a chopper from Tau Devi Lal Stadium in Panchkula.

When the nine MLAs entered the House, the BJP members greeted them by thumping the desks and raising slogans like, “Jai Shri Ram, Ban Gaya Kaam”.

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