Lucknow: The ruling Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) on Monday pushed through the resolution to split Uttar Pradesh into four parts in the state Assembly in less than 10 minutes ignoring stiff opposition after which the House was adjourned sine die.
Like in the Assembly, the controversial proposal also got the approval of the Legislative Council by voice vote. The Council was adjourned sine die after it met briefly.
With Assembly elections in UP due to be held before May next, the state Legislature passed by voice vote without any discussion an interim budget for 2012-2013, showing an estimated surplus of Rs 5,604 crore. The vote-on-account of Rs 54,762 crore for the first four months of the next financial year was also passed.
Chief Minister Mayawati told a hastily convened press conference later that she had done her bit and her government will soon send the resolution to the centre "after which it would be their responsibility to get it passed by the Parliament." She said this was being done as governance of the huge state had become "unwieldy".
The resolution was passed amid stormy scenes in the house. As soon as it assembled for the day at 11 am, the opposition raised slogans against the Mayawati regime and demanded ouster of the government, which led Speaker Sukhdeo Rajhbhar to adjourn the proceedings for an hour.
The House reconvened at 12.20 pm after a brief adjournment following a ruckus and adjourned sine die at 12.30 pm.
As soon as the house re-assembled at 12.20 pm, the opposition once again resorted to slogan shouting, and taking advantage of it, Mayawati herself tabled the resolution. She quickly read out the brief resolution seeking division of Uttar Pradesh into four states - Purvanchal, Paschim Pradesh, Avadh Pradesh and Bundelkhand - and within the next two minutes, the Speaker declared it passed by a voice vote, which again remained inaudible in the din that prevailed.
In a House of 403, BSP has 220 members (after six of its members have been disqualified recently), SP has 89, BJP 48, Cong 20, RLD 10, Independents (9), and RSP 1.
Mayawati said her move to split the state had absolutely nothing to do with the forthcoming elections and that her government had brought up the matter with the Centre for easier governance in 2007.
"The BSP government was already taking initiative for the reorganisation of the state and the decision to bring a resolution in the assembly was taken under compulsion as the Centre was not taking any decision in this regard," Mayawati told reporters.
Mayawati also stressed that her move to divide UP into four parts is not a political gimmick. “Our party’s government had in 2007 written a letter to the Centre over the issue and when the Centre didn’t act on it then we were forced to take this step (Bill in the Assembly),” she said.
On a question whether she would dissolve the House, she retorted back sharply: “Why should I dissolve the House? We have absolute majority.”
Opposition parties oppose
Delegations of Samajwadi Party and BJP met Governor BL Joshi separately and submitted a memorandum demanding that today's proceedings of the assembly should be cancelled and the session convened again.
Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav lambasted Mayawati for pressing a resolution in the Assembly, saying she had made the move to divert attention from charges of corruption dogging her regime.
Yadav made it clear that his party will oppose in Parliament any demand for division of the state.
BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi blamed the Mayawati government of trying to cover its "sins" through such announcements.
Law Minister Salman Khurshid said that decision of division of a state had long-term implications and has to be taken "after adequate consultation".
Congress spokesman Manish Tewari said Mayawati had not held discussions on the vital issue. "Also, it is done when just three months are left for election. What can be said? People of Uttar Pradesh are not fools," he said.
Amar Singh's Rashtriya Lokmanch and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), which is pushing for a separate Telangana state, welcomed Mayawati government's move.
First Published: Monday, November 21, 2011, 09:20