Mumbai/Chandigarh: The Congress won three Rajya Sabha seats in Rajasthan and the BJP one in Rajasthan and the situation was reversed in Karnataka with the saffron party winning three seats and the Congress one, but counting of votes was delayed in Maharashtra and Haryana over alleged violation of rules.
Congress candidates Randeep Surjewala, Mukul Wasnik and Pramod Tiwari were elected to the Rajya Sabha. “When everybody knows that 126 MLAs are with us, why did they field an independent candidate? They wanted to attempt horse-trading but that did not happen,” Gehlot told reporters.
The Congress secured a BJP cross vote. From the BJP, former minister Ghanshyam Tiwari won with 43 votes. The Congress overcame the challenge posed by BJP-backed independent candidate Subhash Chandra.
In Karnataka, the ruling BJP had the last laugh as it won all the three Rajya Sabha seats it had contested in, out of four from the state. The Congress managed to win only one of the two seats to which it had fielded its candidates. The JD(S) which had fielded one candidate, despite not having enough votes, failed to win.
Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, actor-politician Jaggesh, and outgoing MLC Lehar Singh Siroya from the BJP, and former Union minister Jairam Ramesh of Congress were declared elected.
But counting was held up in Maharashtra after the Opposition BJP alleged three MLAs of the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) — Cabinet ministers Jitendra Awhad (NCP) and Yashomati Thakur (Congress), besides Shiv Sena legislator Suhas Kande — violated the model code for voting.
“We have filed an appeal before the Election Commission of India, seeking that their votes be held invalid,” said a state BJP leader.
The BJP has alleged that Awhad and Thakur handed over their ballots to their party agents instead of only showing them the ballots, while Kande showed his ballot to two different agents.
The counting has been put on hold in Haryana for identical reasons.
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” on cameras.
“Permission is needed from the Election Commission for the counting. Officials have sent an email to the ECI seeking the permission. It should be granted in some time,” said Shiv Sena minister Eknath Shinde in Mumbai....