Prakash Ambedkar-led RPI faction to rejoin DF govt

MUMBAI: RPI MP Prakash Ambedkar-led Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh, that had withdrawn from the ruling Democratic Front coalition in Maharashtra over the state government's failure to resolve the ongoing Enron imbroglio, has decided to rejoin the Congress-led government.

"We have reconsidered our decision and decided to be in the government to be part of its decision-making process on the Enron controversy", party general secretary Rekha Thakur said in a statement here on Thursday.

The BBM would press for cabinet rank ministership for its legislature party leader Dr Dashrath Bhande, she added. (PTI)

Prakash Ambedkar files PIL against Enron in HC


MUMBAI: Lok Sabha member from Akola Prakash Ambedkar, whose party Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh (BBM), is a supporter of the Democratic Front (DF) Government in Maharashtra has filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in Mumbai High Court against the US energy major Enron.

Making this announcement in a press statement in Mumbai on Thursday, Ambedkar said that the Democratic Front government was not taking a decisive and firm stand on the ongoing controversy arising out of the high tariff structure of the power giant's Dabhol Power Project in Guhaghar in the Konkan region.

"So, the BBM has decided to take the company to court and filed a PIL in the High Court on Wednesday. The State Government is yet to act on the suggestion of the Godbole Committee that a Judicial Commission be appointed to probe the irregularities in the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)", he added.

Ambedkar also informed that his party has revoked its earlier decision to withdraw from the Democratic Front government in protest against the indecision regarding Enron and statehood the Vidarbha. "We have decided to re-join the government to play an active role in decision making regarding Enron", he added.

Ambedkar has suggested the name of Legislative party leader Dashrath Bhande for a cabinet berth in the 55 member council of ministers. Earlier, Makhram Pawar represented the BBM in the eight-party coalition government. He held the portfolio of mines, trade and commerce. Earlier this year, in the cabinet reshuffle, the departments were alloted to different ministries.

The decision to withdraw from the government was taken by Ambedkar last December, when the winter session of the State Legislature was in progress at Nagpur. But, Pawar refused to resign from the ministry and was eventually suspended. Pawar after few days, put in his papers. BBM, which has three members in the Legislative Assembly, however, continued the support the government from outside.

In the 288 member house, Congress has 74 MLAs, NCP 59, PWP 5, JD(S) 2, RPI 1, BBM 3, CPM 2, Samajwadi Party 1. The government enjoys the support of 12 Independents, taking the total strength of the government to 159. The number of seats for a simple majority is 144. The opposition Shiv Sena has 70 members and BJP 56. There are three one member parties in the Lower House. One member is nominated by the Governor.

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Published on: June 9, 2001
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