No Contest For Rajya Sabha In Maharashtra, BJP Gets 3 Seats

He said that Returning Officer Akhil Arora declared the candidates as the victor.

A senior Congress MLA, on the condition of anonymity, said, "The party may have other national-level equations in mind, but there is no point in humiliating us in front of the TMC, which has tried to destroy the Congress in the state by poaching on our leaders and MLAs".

Kaushik while clarifying on the goof-up of purchasing nomination form, said being the State President, it is his responsibility to make preparations for the candidate on behalf of the party. This will be his second term as a Member of the Parliament.

A total of four seats were up for grabs from the state.

While the BJP withdrew the nomination of former state minister Kiristsinh Rana, Congress leader PL Valera - who had filed as an independent - followed suit soon afterwards.

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The prospect of a contest came up when Valera, a Congress general secretary, and Rana filed their forms on the last day of filing of nomination papers on March 12. The returning officer, however, turned down the objections and accepted the papers of all the three, leaving seven candidates in the fray. "Earlier also BJP played this lowly game during Ahmed Patel ji's election and now again, but Rathwa ji's nomination is absolutely correct and he will win comfortably", Surjewala said. However, the poll panel ruled out any immediate intervention.

JD (S) legislators C.N. Balakrishna (Shravanabelogola) and B.B. Ningaiah (Mudigere) submitted the petition urging the Speaker to not allow the seven legislators from voting since they had ceased to be members of the Assembly on account of the violation of the whip issued by the JD (S) in the last elections held to the Rajya Sabha and their action had not been condoned by the party. Each candidate has to get 44.5 votes (45 votes) to enter the Rajya Sabha.

Banerjee had stated on March 9 that her party would support Singhvi in the Rajya Sabha elections from the state, even before the Congress' announcement of the candidature. The ruling party is hoping that by engineering defection in ranks of Congress and NCP and getting extra votes from Shiv Sena its fourth candidate will sail through.

The candidates elected to the Rajya Sabha from Maharashtra this time are BJP's Narayan Rane, Prakash Javadekar and Kerala leader V Muralidharan.

  • Adam Floyd