Other States

Congress forged signatures of absent Madhya Pradesh MLAs to prove majority, says Opposition

Madhya Pradesh BJP MLAs Sharad Kol (left) and Narayan Tripathi backed the seven-month-old Nath government during voting on the Criminal Law (Madhya Pradesh Amendment) Bill, 2019, in the Assembly.   | Photo Credit: A.M. Faruqui

Leader of the Opposition in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly Gopal Bhargava on Sunday alleged that the Congress had forged the signatures of some of its missing MLAs during the voting on a Bill in the Assembly on July 24, in which two BJP MLAs had voted in favour of it. The BJP is going to take up the issue with the Governor.

“My source has informed me that 8 to 10 Congress MLAs were absent during the voting, yet they managed to get 122 votes to pass the Bill,” Mr. Bhargava told The Hindu. “In the Assembly itself, I was suspect as they were demanding for a division of votes on a non-financial Bill which we supported, just to prove their false majority. I requested the Speaker then that the number of MLAs be counted, but he adjourned the Assembly.”

As the BJP MLAs were in their seats at the time of the voting when Congress MLAs signed against their names in a register, they signed even for absent MLAs, he alleged. “There was no transparency. Since they have never asked for a division of votes on financial Bills in the past, this shows they admit they are on a weak footing,” he said.

The party had asked its advocates to find the constitutional recourse, what the Governor could do and the procedure to get the signatures verified, he added.

Saying the BJP was acting out of desperation to make such an allegation, Shobha Oza, State Congress media chief, said, “Why do they want to topple a democratically elected government? That’s because the 15 years of corruption under their government has got into their DNA, and they just can’t do without it. It is high time they accepted their defeat.”

Rejecting the Computer Baba’s claim that four BJP MLAs were in touch with him eager to cross over to the Congress, Mr. Bhargava said, “He just wants to be in the limelight. There is no damage to the party. We are yet to meet the dissident MLAs.”

With the support of BJP MLAs Sharad Kol and Narayan Tripathi, the Assembly had passed the Criminal (Madhya Pradesh Amendment) Bill, 2019. Later, the two former Congressmen described the positive vote their ‘ghar wapasi’ and said they had supported the Congress since the previous Shivraj Singh Chouhan government had made tall promises but delivered nothing.

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2020 5:32:07 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/cong-forged-signatures-of-its-absent-mlas-in-house-says-bjp/article28738125.ece

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