Amar Singh: allow us to prove majority

Amar Singh  

Gargi Parsai

Party will approach President

NEW DELHI: Samajwadi Party general secretary and spokesman Amar Singh on Saturday said the Mulayam Singh Government should be allowed to prove its majority on the floor of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly.

"We have said we will prove our strength on February 26. In a democracy that right cannot be denied," he told a press conference here.

The party would approach President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam to pre-empt a move by the Centre to dismiss the Government after the Supreme Court on Wednesday disqualified 13 of the 37 Bahujan Samaj Party MLAs who crossed the floor to form the Loktantrik Bahujan Dal.

Mr. Singh said the court was silent on the second batch of 24 MLAs who crossed the floor in 2003. It did not hold the Government "unconstitutional," nor did it ask Mr. Mulayam Singh to step down. "Neither the Congress nor Governor T.V. Rajeswar has the right to decide the fate of the 24 Loktantrik MLAs." According to Mr. Amar Singh, when the SP-led coalition Government was formed in 2003 (after the former Chief Minister Mayawati resigned and the BSP-BJP coalition fell), the SP had the support of 247 MLAs. "Even assuming that all 37 Loktantrik Bahujan Dal MLAs were disqualified, the number comes to 210," he claimed, adding the Government should be allowed to prove its majority. The Assembly was already in session.

Lashing out at the Congress and the Governor, Mr. Amar Singh said the Uttar Pradesh Government was constitutional unlike the Narasimha Rao Government, formed in 1991at the Centre, which was in a minority but completed its term, thanks to horse-trading with the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha. "We will fight the system and take the issue to people."

Advising Mr. Rajeswar "not to go the Buta Singh way in Bihar," he said the constitutionality of the government would be proved on the floor of the House, "not in the four walls of the Raj Bhavan."

BJP's demand

Asked about the BJP having written to the Speaker seeking disqualification of its 10 members who "cross-voted" in the last month's vote of confidence, Mr. Amar Singh said that until a decision was taken on them they were free to go the way they wanted, just as the 24 Loktantrik Bahujan Dal MLAs.