The Gauhati High Court on Tuesday ordered a composite floor test of the UPPL-BJP-GSP combine to prove its majority within four days in the 40-member Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC). Hearing a writ petition by Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) chief Hagrama Mohilary and others, Justice Suman Shyam ordered to hold the composite floor test for formation of the Executive Council by the elected members on or before December 26.
The HC further held that the earlier order of December 18 asking to maintain status quo of the council stands modified. Justice Shyam fixed January 11, 2021 as the next date of hearing and all the parties were directed to file their response by then.
In the recently concluded elections of the 40-member BTC, the BJP dumped its state ally BPF and formed the council government in alliance with local parties United People’s Party Liberal (UPPL) and Gana Suraksha Party (GSP). The incumbent BPF became the single largest party with 17 seats, but Assam Governor Jagdish Mukhi invited the UPPL-BJP-GSP alliance to form the council and the oath ceremony was held accordingly on December 15.
The UPPL had won 12 seats and the BJP nine, while the GSP and Congress bagged one seat each. After the results were declared, one BPF and the lone Congress member switched their sides and joined BJP taking the saffron party’s tally to 11.
Mohilary had filed the writ petition challenging the invitation to the UPPL-BJP-GSP coalition without considering that the BPF as the single largest party should have been allowed to form the council first. The BPF had written to the governor requesting him to give the party the first opportunity to prove their strength in the council but there was no response from the Raj Bhawan.
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