Rajya Sabha polls: Jaitley wins in Uttar Pradesh, Congress wins three seats in Karnataka
The Election Commission declared one vote each of the Bharatiya Janata Party and BSP in UP invalid.
Counting of the votes cast in the Rajya Sabha elections is under way. MLAs in six states – Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Telangana – cast their ballots till 5 pm on Friday for candidates contesting 25 Upper House seats.
The Election Commission gave the go ahead to begin the counting in Uttar Pradesh two hours after it began in other states because of a few objections, according to ANI. The Bahujan Samaj Party and Samajwadi Party filed a complaint with the Election Commission, demanding that MLAs Nitin Agarwal and Anil Singh be disqualified for not showing their ballot papers to the polling agents before casting their vote. Both legislators are believed to have cross-voted in the Rajya Sabha elections. The poll panel gave clearance to start the counting after reviewing CCTV camera footage of the two MLAs showing their ballot papers to their polling agents.
The poll body declared one vote each of the Bharatiya Janata Party and BSP in Uttar Pradesh invalid, India Today reported.
Counting in Karnataka was resumed after a brief halt after Minister Kagodu Thimmappa used two ballot papers, according to The Economic Times. The Janata Dal (Secular) had accused the Returning Officer of colluding with the Congress.
Here are the winners declared so far:
- Uttar Pradesh: Arun Jaitley, Sameer Uranv and Pradeep Kumar Sonthalia (BJP)
- Chhattisgarh: Saroj Pandey (BJP)
- Maharashtra: Kumar Ketkar (Congress)
- Uttarakhand: Anil Baluni (BJP)
- Andhra Pradesh: CM Ramesh (Telugu Desam Party)
- Kerala: Veerendra Kumar (Janata Dal United)
- West Bengal: Abhishek Manu Singhvi (Congress), Abir Ranjan Biswas and Subhasish Chakraborty (Trinamool Congress)
- Telangana: Joginipalli Santosh, Badugula Lingaiah Yadav and Banda Prakash Mudiraj (Telangana Rashtra Samithi)
- Karnataka: Rajeev Chandrashekhar (BJP) and Naseer Hussain, L Hanumanthaiah, Naseer Hussain and GC Chandrasekhar (Congress)
The Jharkhand Vikas Morcha also complained to the Election Commission seeking to have the vote of Prakash Ram cancelled for cross-voting. The central polling body rejected the complaint after reviewing CCTV camera footage.
The terms of 58 Rajya Sabha members from 16 states end in April and May. Of the total, 33 candidates from 10 states were elected unopposed earlier, including Union ministers Ravi Shankar Prasad from Bihar and Prakash Javadekar from Maharashtra. At 10, Uttar Pradesh has the most number of vacancies.
The Upper House of India’s Parliament has a strength of 245 members, of which 233 are representatives of states and union territories and the remaining 12 are nominated by the president.
Some of the big names the BJP announced for the polls are Finance Minister Arun Jaitley (Uttar Pradesh), Health Minister JP Nadda (Himachal Pradesh) and Social Justice Minister Thawarchand Gehlot (Madhya Pradesh). The Congress, too, nominated some heavyweights, including Abhishek Manu Singhvi (West Bengal).