Independent MLAs protest in Himachal

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Three from Himachal Pradesh, who joined the BJP on March 23 after submitting their resignation letters to Assembly Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathaniyan on March 22, Independent MLAs, Hoshiar Singh from Dehra, Ashish Sharma from Hamirpur and KL Thakur from Nalagarh sat on a dharna outside the Assembly on Saturday in protest against the delay and delay in accepting their resignations by the Speaker. It is noteworthy that all three independent MLAs had voted for Bharatiya Janata Party candidate Harsh Mahajan in the recently held Rajya Sabha elections.

A notice was issued to these MLAs on behalf of the Assembly seeking clarification whether they had resigned voluntarily or under pressure. According to an Assembly employee, ‘The Speaker has received a report from the Congress Legislature Party that these MLAs have resigned not voluntarily but under pressure and we have sought clarification from them in this regard. The Assembly Speaker had earlier said that the independent MLAs had submitted their resignations, but did not give the reason for the same. He said that this will be taken into consideration and necessary procedure will be followed.

Meanwhile, the MLAs insisted that they had resigned of their own free will as they were being humiliated, but instead of accepting the resignations, the Assembly Speaker sought an explanation from them and asked them to appear before him on April 10. . Hoshiar Singh told reporters, ‘We are independent MLAs and are not associated with any party and are free to resign. It is wrong to say that the resignation was done under pressure and it is absurd to ask why we have resigned. Our resignation should be accepted. He said, despite repeated reminders and sending e-mails, our resignations are not being accepted and we have been forced to sit on strike. We do not know why the resignations are not being accepted and the way for a new mandate is being paved. The other two independent MLAs, Shaman and Thakur, accused Chief Minister Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu of stalling development works in the last 14 months. “Sukhu humiliated us and discriminated against our constituencies,” he alleged. The Chief Minister inducted his friends in the Cabinet and took political revenge by raiding businesses and filing false cases against MLAs.”

BJP wants by-elections for all the nine assembly constituencies. BJP’s Himachal Pradesh unit president Rajeev Bindal has termed non-acceptance of resignations of independent MLAs as unconstitutional and illegal. He said that it is the right of any person to resign from the post.

Only he can explain why the Assembly Speaker, who immediately terminated the membership of 6 Congress members, is not accepting the resignation of the independent MLAs, but due to the sitting on strike by the independent MLAs, many questions have arisen. Along with the Lok Sabha elections, BJP also wants to hold by-elections of 9 MLAs. Congress feels that if Congress loses 9 out of 9 by-elections then the Congress government in the state will be seen faltering.

Understanding this, there is a delay in accepting the resignation letters of independent MLAs. According to Congress, if Congress’s position in the state remains better in the Lok Sabha election results, then after that by-elections will be conducted for independent MLAs. BJP wants that due to Modi wave in the Lok Sabha elections, it will easily win these 9 seats and with the strengthening of BJP’s position, the pressure on the state government will increase.

It is the prerogative of the Speaker of the Assembly to accept the resignation, hence the independent MLAs have no option but to knock on the door of the court. Keeping in mind the dignity and decorum of his post, the Speaker should also accept the resignation of the three independent MLAs without any delay. It should be taken, this is the need of the hour.

-Irwin Khanna, Editor-in-Chief, Dainik Uttam Hindu.

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