2 SP, 1 BSP MLCs quit in UP; 'BJP mischief,' cries Oppn
Two Opposition SP and one BSP members on Saturday quit the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council causing disquiet among Opposition parties in the state. The development came on a day that BJP president Amit Shah arrived on a three-day visit to the state capital. The resignations of the sitting MLCs — Bukkal Nawab and Yashwant Singh of the Samajwadi Party and Thakur Jaiveer Singh of the Bahujan Samaj Party — have been accepted, informed UP Legislative Council Chairman Ramesh Yadav.
Taken by surprise, the SP, the BSP and the Congress criticized the ruling BJP for their move. UP Congress general secretary Deepak Singh, an MLC, alleged that as Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and his ministers will not be able to get elected to the Assembly, they are "forcing" the Opposition members in the Council to resign from their seats by giving them the threat of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CB), the Enforcement Directorate and the Income Tax department.
The BJP has to soon take a decision on five of its ministers in Uttar Pradesh, including Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who are not members of either of the two Houses. Besides Adityanath, deputy chief ministers Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma, ministers Swatantra Dev Singh and Mohsin Raza are not members of either the Assembly or the Council and will have to get elected to either of the two Houses to continue as ministers.
SP chief and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav said he had met Nawab on Eid and wondered why he had a "sudden change of heart". "I will talk to him (Nawab), if he has not been kept hostage, and ask him why he is not giving the ruling BJP leaders a chance to face the public (elections)... (Why) are some MLCs being lured and tutored so as to enable (their leaders) to dodge the people," he told reporters here. In a statement, BSP president Mayawati said that the BJP's "greed for power has turned into lust for power".