Uttarakhand’s rebel Congress MLAs released a video of “sting” operation purportedly showing chief minister Harish Rawat offering them bribes for support during the floor test in the assembly on March 28. The CM, who called it “fake”.
While CM Rawat called the video “fake”, Congress alleged that the “dirty tricks department” of BJP president Amit Shah is at work. The BJP demanded “immediate dismissal” of the Rawat government.
Releasing the alleged ‘sting video’ in Delhi, former Uttarakhand chief minister Vijay Bahuguna, who is leading the rebel MLAs, said, “The very content of that CD proves that you (Rawat) are using undue influence and bribe to attract the nine MLAs... He should resign on moral grounds.”
“The sting CD being shown on news channels is fake. The reputation of the man behind it who is associated with a private news channel is not hidden from anyone. His antecedents must be probed,” Rawat said at a hurriedly-called press conference at his residence in Dehradun.
Even though he called the CD “false”, Rawat said if at all it indicates something, it is that the rebel MLAs have aligned with BJP for money.
In a statement, AICC’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said, “Congress will not be cowed down by such tactics, conspiracies and threats. Even today, the Uttarakhand government enjoys majority. We will abide by constitutional directions and will prove our majority on the floor of the House.”
Reacting to the ‘sting video’, BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya said Rawat has “no right to remain in power” even for a moment and said a party delegation will meet President Pranab Mukherjee to demand his intervention.
“We had told the governor that the state government will indulge in horse trading. We could not understand as to why he gave so many days to it to prove its majority in the assembly. Our fears have come true. It has been clearly exposed today that he Harish Rawat is busy buying over his own MLAs,” he said.