Ahead of next month’s Presidential election, the BJP received a major boost by registering wins in three of the four states where Rajya Sabha polls were held for 16 seats on Friday (June 10).
The BJP bagged three seats each in Maharashtra and Karnataka while there were one wins apiece in Rajasthan and Haryana.
In Maharashtra, the ruling alliance of the Shiv Sena, NCP, and Congress suffered a setback after the counting of votes was delayed for eight hours amid complaints of cross-voting and rules violation by the BJP and the ruling alliance.
Both BJP and the Shiv Sena approached the Election Commission, alleging cross-voting and seeking disqualification of votes.
The poll panel directed the Rajya Sabha election returning officer of Maharashtra to reject the vote cast by Shiv Sena legislator Suhas Kande, after which the counting of votes got underway.
From the BJP, Union minister Piyush Goyal and former state minister Anil Bonde, and Dhananjay Mahadik won.
Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut, NCP’s Praful Patel, and Congress’ Imran Pratapgarhi also won.
The contest was for the sixth seat — the BJP had fielded former MP Dhananjay Mahadik and the Shiv Sena candidate was Sanjay Pawar, who lost.
“Elections are contested not just for the fight, but the victory. Jai Maharashtra,” tweeted BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis, whose refusal to have consensus candidates for the Rajya Sabha led to elections in the state after 23 years.
— Devendra Fadnavis (@Dev_Fadnavis) June 10, 2022
In Karnataka, the BJP bagged three seats with Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, actor-turned-politician Jaggesh and outgoing MLC Lehar Singh Siroya winning. The other seat was won by Congress’ former Union minister Jairam Ramesh.
Former Prime Minister Deve Gowda’s Janata Dal Secular (JD-S) did not win a single seat.
The fight for the fourth seat witnessed a direct contest between Siroya (BJP’s third candidate), Mansoor Ali Khan (Congress’ second candidate) and D Kupendra Reddy (JD-S’ lone candidate).
In Haryana, the Congress had declared that its candidate Ajay Maken had won. But later deleted the tweet. In re-counting, Independent candidate Kartikeya Sharma, backed by the BJP, was declared the winner.
Earlier, the counting of votes for the two Rajya Sabha seats from Haryana was put on hold after the BJP and Sharma urged the Election Commission to cancel the votes of two Congress MLAs.
BJP nominee Krishan Lal Panwar and Independent candidate Kartikeya Sharma shot off a missive to the EC, alleging Congress MLAs Kiran Choudhary and B B Batra showed their ballot papers to unauthorised persons after marking them and that the episodes were “duly captured” by the camera installed for the purpose of election.
Congress bags three seats in Rajasthan
In Rajasthan, the ruling Congress won three of the four Rajya Sabha seats, overcoming the challenge posed by the BJP-backed independent candidate Subhash Chandra. The BJP bagged one seat.
Congress candidates Randeep Surjewala, Mukul Wasnik and Pramod Tiwari and the BJP’s Ghanshyam Tiwari were declared elected by the Election Commission late Friday night.
With this, the Congress’ tally of Rajya Sabha MPs from Rajasthan will increase to six, out of a total of 10. The BJP will have four members.
Of the 200 votes, 199 were valid and one vote was rejected.
Randeep Surjewala, Mukul Wasnik, and Pramod Tiwari got 43, 42, and 41 votes respectively while Ghanshyam Tiwari got 43 votes. Chandra, a media baron, got 30 votes.
BJP MLA Shobharani Kushwah cross-voted in favour of Congress candidate Pramod Tiwari. The BJP suspended her from the party’s primary membership soon after.
Here is the full list of Rajya Sabha election winners and losers.
- Winners: Kartikeya Sharma (Independent backed by BJP-JJP); Krishan Lal Panwar (BJP).
- Loser: Ajay Maken (Congress).
- Winners: Nirmala Sitharaman (BJP); Jaggesh (BJP); Lahar Singh Siroya (BJP); Jairam Ramesh (Congress).
- Losers: D Kupendra Reddy (JD-S); Mansoor Ali Khan (Congress).
- Winners: Piyush Goyal (BJP); Anil Bonde (BJP); Dhananjay Mahadik (BJP); Praful Patel (NCP); Sanjay Raut (Shiv Sena); Imran Pratapgarhi (Congress).
- Loser: Sanjay Pawar (Shiv Sena).
- Winners: Mukul Wasnik (Congress); Randeep Surjewala (Congress); Pramod Tiwari (Congress); Ghanshyam Tiwari (BJP).
- Loser: Subhash Chandra (Independent backed by BJP and RLP).
(With inputs from agencies)