BJP in touch with MLAs across party lines, anything possible in RS polls: Jai Ram Thakur

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Jairam Thakur Himachal BJP

Jai Ram Thakur (File photo)

Shimla: Leader of opposition in Himachal Pradesh Jai Ram Thakur on Monday said the BJP is in touch with MLAs across party lines and given the atmosphere of "disappointment and unhappiness" in the Congress, anything could happen in the Rajya Sabha polls for one seat.


He said he has appealed to the Congress and independent MLAs to exercise their "conscience vote" if they are unhappy with the government.

This comes days after the BJP sprung a surprise on February 15 by fielding former minister Harsh Mahajan, who had joined the party in 2022 ahead of the state assembly polls, as its candidate for the Rajya Sabha seat against the Congress' Abhishek Manu Singhvi.

The BJP's move dashed hopes of the Congress to get Singhvi, a senior advocate of the Supreme Court who is a sitting Rajya Sabha member from West Bengal, elected unopposed.


Speaking to reporters here, Thakur said given the atmosphere of "disappointment and unhappiness" in the Congress party and government, anything could happen in the Rajya Sabha polls.

"We are in talks with legislators across party lines," he said, adding that the three independent MLAs are of the BJP's ideology.

"I have appealed to the independent MLAs as well as Congress legislators to exercise conscience vote if they are unhappy and support the BJP candidate," he said.


The Congress has 40 MLAs in the 68-member Himachal Pradesh assembly. The BJP has 25 legislators and there are three independents.

The state's lone Rajya Sabha seat will fall vacant on April 2 with the expiry of BJP president J P Nadda's six-year term. The BJP has fielded Nadda from Gujarat this time.

At present, all three Rajya Sabha seats from Himachal Pradesh are held by the BJP, the other two members being Indu Goswami and Sikender Kumar.


Thakur said the 2024-25 budget presented by Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu is "directionless" and a state minister has openly expressed his displeasure over it.

Apparently upset over the omission of some sections in the budget, Public Works Minister Vikramaditya had said on Sunday that it was due to negligence of some officers and the government has taken cognisance of it.

Talking to PTI on Sunday, Vikramaditya said multi-purpose workers of the Public Works Department (PWD) have been left out of the budget and there is no reference to job seekers sitting on dharnas for early declaration of recruitment exam results.

Sukhu had presented the 2024-25 budget of Rs 58,444 crore in the assembly on Saturday.