Thursday, July 18, 2024

Cong doubles its tally in Telangana Legislative Council after defection of BRS MLCs


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Shillong, July 5: The midnight defection of six MLCs of the Bharat Rashtra Samiti (BRS) has doubled the strength of the ruling Congress party to 12 in the 40-member Telangana Legislative Council.


The joining of six MLCs in one go came as another big jolt to the main opposition party, which has already lost six MLAs to the ruling party.


Dande Vittal, Bhanu Prasad, B. Dayanand, Prabhakar Rao, Egge Mallesham and Basavaraju Saraiah formally joined the Congress party around 1 a.m. after the return of Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy from Delhi.


AICC in-charge Deepa Dasmunshi, revenue minister P. Srinivasa Reddy, former Sudershan Reddy and other leaders were also present.


The BRS MLCs met at a hotel on Thursday night and later reached Revanth Reddy’s residence.


Their joining has boosted the Congress party’s strength in the Council to 12. The party already has six MLCs in the Upper House.


The latest jolt to BRS came a day after senior leader and Rajya Sabha member K. Keshava Rao joined the Congress party. He also quit as Rajya Sabha member.


BRS has lost six MLAs to Congress since the defeat in Assembly elections held in November 2023. Congress had won 64 seats in the 119-member Assembly. After the defections from BRS and the victory in the Secunderabad Cantonment by-election, its strength has gone up to 71.


On the other hand, the number of BRS MLAs has come down to 32.


The MLCs who switched loyalties were elected to Council from different categories. While three were elected from Local Bodies, two were nominated under the Governor’s quota. The sixth was elected by MLAs.


Most of these MLCs were originally from Congress but crossed over to the BRS when it was in power.


There are two vacancies in the 40-member Council. The ruling party had nominated M. Kodandaram and Amer Ali Khan under the Governor’s quota but the High Court quashed their nomination.


The High Court also quashed the governor’s orders dated September 19, 2023, rejecting the nomination of BRS leaders Sravan Dasoju and K. Satyanarayana. Then Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan had rejected the nomination of Sravan Dasoju and Satyanarayana under the Governor’s quota.


Challenging the Governor’s orders, the BRS leaders had filed writ petitions in the High Court. Following the High Court’s order, they appealed to the Governor to appoint them as MLCs. (IANS)


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