Shimla: Congress legislator Ram Kumar Chaudhary, who faces murder charges on Thursday took oath in the Himachal Pradesh assembly after being brought from a jail in Haryana.

Chaudhary, sworn in the chamber of Speaker Brij Bihari Lal Butail, has been booked for murder by Haryana Police. He was brought to Shimla, where a large number of his supporters were assembled, from Ambala jail under heavy security cover. He is one of four suspects in the murder of a 24-year-old woman in Panchkula in Haryana on November 22.

"It's a political conspiracy by my political rivals. I am innocent," Chaudhary told reporters after taking oath. Asked about his confession, he said, "It's a police theory. I have full faith in the judiciary. I have never confessed that I committed the crime." Ruling out the possibility of quitting the house in the wake of the JS Verma Committee report that legislators involved in woman-related crime should morally resign, he said he would come out clean.  

"I will continue to work as a legislator. Even people are contesting elections from behind the bars," he said. "I have just submitted a list of his priorities as a legislator to the speaker." After evading arrest, Chaudhary surrendered before a Panchkula court on January 8, the day other legislators took oath. Chaudhary is a first-time legislator from Doon in Solan district. He is the son of four-time Congress legislator Lajja Ram.

(Agencies)

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