As voting began for the four Rajya Sabha seats in Rajasthan, the ruling Congress on Friday expressed confidence that it had the numbers to win three seats while the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party said it expects a “miracle” when the results are announced.
Prime Minister Ashok Gilot said the Congress would win three out of four seats.
He criticized the opposition BJP for including Subhash Chandra as an independent candidate despite not having a majority, claiming that “their MLAs did not like Chandra”.
The BJP has confirmed that its official candidate Ganshyam Tiwari and independent candidate Chandra will win.
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Before leaving for the assembly building to vote, Gehlot told reporters outside the Leela Palace Hotel on the Delhi highway, “I say again we won three seats comfortably and they (the BJP) should look after their house. The way they presented another candidate, was not liked by before the MLAs of their party.” There is a reaction in the whole country. The elections were unnecessarily held otherwise all four seats – three by us and one by the BJP – would have won comfortably,” he said.
He said the BJP had done the same during the previous Rajya Sabha elections in 2020, but they were defeated.
“These people will be defeated again this time,” he said.
However, BPL MLA Vasudev Devnani said a “miracle” will happen when the results are announced in the evening.
“Our demand is still standing. You will witness a miracle when the results are announced,” Devnani told reporters in parliament after casting their votes.
One candidate needs 41 votes to win.
Congress, with its 108 MLA, would have 26 surplus votes after winning two seats. To win the third seat requires 15 votes.
Congress, which dispatched Randeep Surjwala, Mukul Wasnik and Pramod Tiwari, claims to support 126 MLAs, including 108 from the same party. The party needs 123 MLAs to win three seats.
The BJP has 71 MLAs in the state assembly, enough to secure one seat in the Rajya Sabha this time. After that, it will be left with 30 surplus votes.
Chandra got 30 BJP surplus votes and three RLP (total – 33). He fewer than eight MLAs to win the seat.
Polling began at 9 a.m. and will conclude by 4 p.m. Votes will be counted at 5 pm.