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14 March 2018, 10:48 | Devin Moran
With 324 members the BJP and its allies are sure to win eight seats. This will leave 28 additional votes with the saffron party
Knowing pretty well that Rajya Sabha elections would not be a smooth sail in Gujarat, the ruling BJP has shifted Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for a "safer entry" into House of Elders from BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh. However, the BJP later chose to drop Ms Rahatkar from the election race.
CM said she had raked up issues pertaining to state with the central leadership of party as party's National General Secretary and now that she's going to be elected to Rajya Sabha, she can raise up issues in Parliament as well.
Extending his best wishes to BJP National General Secretary Saroj Pandey on her filing nominations for Rajya Sabha, Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh said now that the nomination process has been completed, it is for sure that she will be elected to Rajya Sabha.
However, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala accused the BJP of playing a motivated games and said,"The BJP played this lowly game during Ahmed Patel's election and now again".
Meanwhile, the BJP has reportedly made a decision to field Rajiv Chandrashekar, who hails from Kerla, as its candidate due to pressure from the RSS. Surprisingly, BJP leader and former minister Kiritsinh Rana too arrived with the saffron party's mandate. In actuality, the person who had come on behalf of the BJP President, was asked to bring the proforma of nomination form, on the contrary, he purchased a nomination form, leading to all misunderstandings. Nomination papers of one Independent were rejected.
In the 182-member assembly, BJP has 99 MLAs and Congress 77 and thus both Congress and the BJP can only send two candidates each to the Upper House.
Today was the last date for scrutiny of nominations while March 15 is the last day for withdrawal of candidature.
The Congress deployed Leader of Opposition in Assembly, Paresh Dhanani, and senior party leader Shaktisinh Gohil to put forward Rathwa's case. Rathwa and Amee Yajnik will be contesting from Gujarat. Independent candidate PK Valera is also backed by the Congress.
On Tuesday the forms of the candidates were scrutinised and accepted by the election returning officer.
The third candidate of the Congress is expected to emerge victorious with the likely support of seven JD (S) rebels and B R Patil of the Karnataka Janata Paksha, independent MLA B.R. Nagendra, and Ashok Kheny (Karnataka Makkala Paksha).
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