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BJP adds dramatic twist to Rajya Sabha elections by adding fourth candidate

BJP adds dramatic twist to Rajya Sabha elections by adding fourth candidate”

In the House of 182 legislators, BJP has a strength of 99 against the Congress party's 77. Former Union minister in the previous Congress-led UPA government Naran Rathwa and senior leader of the Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) Amee Yagnik have filed nominations as Congress party candidates.

Talking to mediapersons, union petroleum and natural gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan said Madhya Pradesh is the laboratory of public welfare programmes where they are conceived and enforced first.

Rajya Sabha nominations need the support of 10 MLAs.

Biennial elections are being held for 58 Rajya Sabha seats across several states and by-poll for one in Kerala. Veerendra Kumar's term would have expired in April 2022.

BJP candidate and UP general secretary Salil Bishnoi, when contacted said, "As per the orders of my party leadership, I have filed my nomination papers".

In the 224-member assembly, each candidate will require 44 votes to win a Rajya Sabha seat.

There was speculation that the BJP may ask some of its leaders to withdraw from the contest. Today was the last day for filing nominations.

The infighting in the Gujarat unit of the Congress came to fore with party leader P K Valera entering the fray as an independent.

Before going to Assembly, BJP's Rajya Sabha candidates reached BJP Headquarters and garlanded the statues of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay, Kushabhau Thakre and Rajmata Scindia. With 122 members, the BJP can easily send three of its candidates to the Rajya Sabha.

There is a likelihood of 28 votes of the BJP which would be left after the division of votes amongst its eight candidates, being transferred to Agarwal.

But with the recent spat over AP's funding (with the Centre) in the Union Budget 2018, and with both the TDP and BJP withdrawing their ministers from the state and union cabinets, the Telugu Desam Party led by AP chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu has made a decision to play it safe and avoid mudslinging over the RS seats.

Former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda is the JD-S supremo and his second son and former Chief Dinister H.D. Kumaraswamy is its working president.

It was Sonia Gandhi who decided the candidature of Ketkar, a veteran journalist who is not a party member but has been publicly defending the Congress and opposing the Sangh ideology. Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar had filed his papers earlier. In keeping with the BJP's strength in the state Assembly, three candidates of the party can be elected with the help of a few independents and small parties. Two other BJP leaders Ajay Pratap Singh and Kailash Soni also submitted the nomination forms. The BJP looks set to win four seats and the Congress one.



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