Expelled Cong. MLAs to join BJP

11 August, 2017, 04:12 | Author: Pamela Mathis
  • BJP chief Amit Shah Union minister Smriti Irani defector Balwantsinh Rajput and Congress leader Ahmed Patel are in the fray the last two will face off against each other. Voting is scheduled to begin at 9

In the run-up to the Rajya Sabha election, the Congress accused the BJP governments in Gujarat and at the centre of pressuring its MLAs by using the state machinery.

Former Congress leader Shankar Singh Vaghela, who has been repeatedly chanting that Patel is his friend and that he will vote for him, did a U-turn today when after the voting he said he did not vote for Patel.

BJP president Amit Shah walking into the Rajya Sabha and Patel walking out would have had its own message: an unstoppable BJP on the ascent and the sun setting on the Congress empire. Senior leaders conceded that one clear outcome of the Gujarat Rajya Sabha election was that the equations within the Congress would be reset and vice-president Rahul Gandhi would be "involving" Patel in the decision- making process in a big way. "All this will be challenged in the court of law", said Vaghela, who is related to Rajput. The Congress' petition was first rejected by the RO, but after the intervention of the EC in New Delhi, the MLAs were found guilty. Patel managed to secure 44 votes, by defeating the Congress defectors and BJP nominee Balwantsinh Rajput. General Secretary in-charge of the state, Bhupinder Yadav, who played a key role in the party's surprising victory from Jharkhand, was also stationed in Gujarat for the last two days.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Nalin Kotadiya said that he has voted against BJP in the Rajya Sabha polls.

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He also accepted that this was his most hard election and claimed that he had been hounded by agencies such as the IB.

But the points Ramesh raised warrant brainstorming, instead of the usual attempt by other Congressmen to push the issue under the carpet, especially now after Patel's win. "I asked them to take their words back and since they did not do so, I voted for BJP", Vaghela told a media gathering on Thursday morning at his residence in Gandhinagar. A crucial clause in the constitutional amendment bill fell due to a lack of two-thirds vote and the success of opposition amendments due to 31 BJP and NDA MPs being absent. It would have been demoralising for the Congress at a time when the Gujarat Assembly polls are just a few months away.

They also asserted that the concept of secrecy in Rajya Sabha elections is no more valid because the parliament has made elections to Rajya Sabha through open ballot. The election has been necessitated following the completion of the tenures of three existing members: Union minister Smriti Irani and Dilip Pandya of BJP and Ahmed Patel of Congress.

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