BJP legislators’ meet in Chandigarh, new entrants present

Shimla: Total 44 BJP MLAs Including newly inducted members Prakash Rana from Joginder Nagar (Mandi district) and Hoshiyar Singh from Dehra (Kangra) attended the BJP legislative party meeting held at Himachal Bhawan Chandigarh on Thursday in which all members of party, barring one were present.
State Assembly has a total strength of 45 including the two new members who joined the party recently. Party convened the legislative party meeting of Himachal Pradesh and Haryana on Thursday to support the candidature of Ms. Draupadi Murmu for the president of India at Himachal Pradesh Bhawan Thursday. .
Two members joined the party on June 9, 2022 however they were elected as Independent MLAs against the party candidate of BJP. In important development, BJP won 44 seats in the 2017 Assembly but it lost one seat of Jubbal Kotkhai with death of party MLA Narendra Bragta, later lost this seat to Congress. But now it succeeded in increasing its tally from 43 to 45 with two Independent MLAs. Anil Sharma who is BJP MLA from Mandi did not attend the party legislative meeting thus virtual strength of BJP was still 44 in the Assembly who are eligible for vote in presidential election.
Importantly, two MLAs never attended party legislative meeting but ahead of President Election BJP succeeded to bring them in its fold. Congress’ leader of Opposition in Himachal Pradesh Assembly also filed a petition before Speaker Vipin Singh Parmar on Thursday seeking to disqualify the membership of Parkash Rana and Hoshiyar Singh stating that they defected from the Independent MLAs of the house in violation of Anti-defection law.
He said they could not join BJP without re-electing themselves however lawmakers breach the trust by defying the Anti-defection act. Party holds a legislative party meeting at Himachal Bhawan Chandigarh to avoid media glare to facilitate two members in the meeting and to hide the abstaining of the ruling party meeting, Congress leader Mukesh Agnihotri said. (UNI)

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