Modi Government To Withdraw President's Rule, Congress Back In Uttarakhand

11/05/2016 12:48 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:26 AM IST
Hindustan Times via Getty Images
DEHRADUN, INDIA - MAY 10: Uttarakhand former Chief Minister Harish Rawat interacting with media after the floor test outside the assembly, on May 10, 2016 in Dehradun, India. Rawat has claimed victory in the trust vote held today in the Uttarakhand Assembly. The results will be handed over to the Supreme Court in a sealed cover, and the court will declare the results at 10:30 am on Wednesday. (Photo by Vinay Santosh Kumar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

NEW DELHI -- The Modi government today told the Supreme Court that Congress Party's Harish Rawat had won the vote of confidence in the Uttarakhand Assembly, and the Centre will withdraw President's Rule in the state by the end of the day.

The Supreme Court said that Rawat got 33 out of 61 votes, which paves his way back to power in Uttarakhand, where the Centre imposed President's Rule in March.

The Congress Party claimed victory soon after a trust vote was conducted on the floor of the Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, triggering celebrations among its members. But the result was made official today after Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the Supreme Court that Rawat had enough votes to return as Chief Minister of Uttarakhand.

"They did their worst. We did our best. Democracy won in Uttarakhand," tweeted Rahul Gandhi, shortly after the Modi government said it would revoke President's Rule.

"Hope Modi ji learns his lesson-ppl of this country & the institutions built by our founding fathers will not tolerate the murder of democracy," he said on Twitter.

The crisis in Uttarakhand was triggered on March 18, when nine Congress Party leaders rebelled against Rawat, and joined 27 lawmakers from the Bharatiya Janata Party in seeking dismissal of his government.

Calling the Congress Party government in Uttarakhand as "unconstitutional and immoral," the Centre imposed President's Rule on March 27, just a day before a trust vote was scheduled for Rawat to prove whether he had a majority in the Assembly.

While the Congress Party accused the Modi government of "murdering democracy," the BJP and rebel leaders said that Rawat had indulged in horse-trading to win support. The Central Bureau of Investigation recently summoned Rawat for questioning in connection with a sting operation which allegedly showed lawmakers being offered bribes.

On March 28, Rawat moved the Uttarakhand High Court, which quashed President's Rule. The Supreme Court stayed the decision of the High Court, and scheduled a trust vote on May 10, but disqualified the nine rebel lawmakers from voting, giving Congress Party the advantage.

On Tuesday, Rawat won with two votes to spare after Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party came out in support of the Congress Party.

While speaking to the press on Wednesday, Rawat thanked the Supreme Court and the High Court, and also the Centre and the Attorney General for moving quickly to revoke President's Rule after the floor test proved that he had the majority.

"I want to tell my BJP friends, let us forget the past experience and begin a new chapter," he said.

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