Uttarakhand government totters as Congress MLAs rebel

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Dehradun, March 18 (IANS) The Congress-led Uttarakhand government plunged into political uncertainty late Friday as nine of its legislators joined ranks with the principal opposition Bharatiya Janata Party.

The Harish Rawat-led government ended up with a red face as it got merely 32 votes in favour against the 36 required for the Finance Bill to be passed.

The political upheaval began with the falling of the Finance Bill in the state assembly.

Clearly the ruling party rebels, led by agriculture minister Harak Singh Rawat, walked over to the BJP camp.

Earlier, speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal declared the Bill as passed which led to further furore.

Harak Singh Rawat who was the top contender for the chief minister’s post — but the party high command chose Harish Rawat over him — later resigned from the state cabinet.

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After the sudden turn of events, the BJP’s 27 legislators along with the nine Congress rebels went to the Raj Bhavan and met governor K.K. Paul and sought dismissal of the state Congress government.

Senior BJP leaders from New Delhi also rushed to the hill state to take stock of the situation.

Sources, however, told IANS that the BJP would not stake claim to form the government and instead would prefer central rule in the face of the imminent fall of the Harish Rawat government.

“We have numbers on our side but would not like to make a government at this juncture, more so as state assembly polls are less than a year from now” a senior leader told IANS.

— Indo-Asian News Service

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