Rajya Sabha polls: Gujarat MLAs to have the Nota option

Rajya Sabha polls: Gujarat MLAs to have the Nota option

Rajya Sabha polls: Gujarat MLAs to have the Nota option

After Congress' fort started crumbling in Gujarat where seven MLAs have already shifted their loyalties to the BJP ahead of ensuing crucial Rajya Sabha elections, the Congress shifted their 44 MLAs to Bengaluru where ruling Karnataka Congress Government is providing them shelter and security.

Gohil said they only need 45 votes to send Sonia Gandhi's political adviser Ahmed Patel to the Rajya Sabha and they are confident of victory even after the string of resignations. "But we will ensure that they will be safe and our party candidate wins the Rajya Sabha seat", Shivakumar said. The poll authorities yesterday announced here that none of the above (NOTA) option can be used for the Rajya Sabha elections. "First Rajya Sabha election was postponed".

It must be remembered that the three seats that are being contested have BJP national president Amit Shah and the newly inducted Information and Broadcasting minister Smriti Irani, in addition to Congress' Patel. Our candidate had 13-14 votes surplus and the BJP says they do not steal.

The CPI (M) had fielded Bikash after its politburo stopped its general secretary Sitaram Yechuri from seeking re-election for the third term with the Congress support.

The Election Commission has sought an enquiry report from the Gujarat Government over Congress' allegation of effecting defection of its MLAs by BJP. Sources said the party bigwigs were trying to distance the "High Command" and downplay the election as a "routine" one, describing Patel as yet another party leader. The Congress party made a decision to shift 44 of its remaining 51 MLAs in the 182-set Gujarat Assembly to the city and prevent them from defecting to the BJP, the ruling party in the western state. Vaghela who claimed that party members were conspiring against him was earlier a member of the BJP, who later formed his own party and then merged with the Congress.

According to the Chief Minister, the Congress MLAs from Banaskantha and other affected regions should have stayed with the people in this hard time.

Bharat Pandya, spokesperson of BJP, said that the party is not just a political party but a social organization as well.

Yet "the BJP is saying it will win the election. We have all of them here, you can ask them anything you want", Mr Gohil asserted.

Even in the mid '90s, when Shankarsinh Vaghela split the BJP and ferreted his MLAs to a resort to Khajuraho, it was primarily a battle for supremacy within a "parivar". "For BJP, there are three preferences, while for Congress, we have only one, that is Ahmed Patel", he said. Sharma added that only Parliament could legislate such an amendment to apply NOTA to RS polls as well (it's applicable to Lok Sabha polls).

He said the developments of the past few days had shown that the BJP government in Gujarat is not concerned about the flood situations and only Congress is working in the affected areas. However, rumours have it that signs of dissent are loud and strong among the 44 MLAs lodged away in Bengaluru. Six of Congress' 57 MLAs resigned last week bringing down their number to 51.

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