BJP members walk out in protest against test by voice vote

The Vijay Bahuguna government in Uttarakhand won the vote of confidence on Thursday, even as the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party walked out seeking a secret ballot.

The government secured 39 votes in its favour, with no votes against, in the House of 70 — Congress 31, one Anglo-Indian member, three from the Bahujan Samaj Party, one from the Uttarakhand Kranti Dal ( P) and three independents.

The 40th member is the Speaker, a Congress MLA, who remained neutral.

The confidence motion won, Mr. Bahuguna requested the Speaker to arrange a headcount to prove his majority.

Pandemonium broke out when it became clear that the “test” would be by a voice vote and not a secret ballot as sought by the BJP. The BJP members opposed the move and raised slogans in support of the secret ballot before walking out.