The Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday became the single-largest party in the Rajya Sabha, winning 18 of the 58 seats contested. The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance won 27 of the 58 seats, of which 33 candidates were elected unopposed, but it still fell short of a majority, The Indian Express reported.
The BJP won nine of the 10 seats in Uttar Pradesh and one each in Karnataka, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh. In Uttar Pradesh, the party ensured the defeat of the Bahujan Samaj Party’s candidate Bhimrao Ambedkar, with BSP leader Anil Kumar Singh voting for Anil Agarwal, a BJP-backed independent candidate. The Samajwadi Party’s MLA Nitin Agarwal is also believed to have voted for Agarwal. The Samajwadi Party, which won a seat, and the BSP later filed a complaint with the Election Commission, demanding that Nitin Agarwal and Singh be disqualified for not showing their ballot papers to the polling agents before casting their vote, but the complaint was later rejected.
“I thank our MLAs and allies for their support,” Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath told reporters after the results were announced. “I would also like to thank the independent MLAs who supported us for the betterment of the state.”
He claimed that the Samajwadi Party did not transfer its additional votes to the BSP’s candidate. However, The Indian Express reported that an analysis of the numbers revealed that while the Samajwadi Party’s additional votes were transferred to the BSP, independent MLA Raja Bhaiyya, who had pledged his support to the Samajwadi Party, did not vote for its candidate.
The ruling parties in Telangana and West Bengal also did well. The Telangana Rashtra Samithi’s B Prakash, B Lingaiah Yadav and J Santosh Kumar won, the Trinamool Congress bagged four seats in West Bengal. The Congress’ Abhishek Manu Singhvi won the fifth seat in West Bengal with Trinamool’s help.
In Karnataka, where Assembly elections will be held in the next couple of months, the Congress won three of the four seats up for grabs, and the BJP’s Rajeev Chandrasekhar also got elected. He polled the highest votes, with 50 legislators supporting his candidature, Mint reported.
In Jharkhand, the Congress retained the seat it held earlier while the BJP gained one at the expense of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha. The Congress fashioned a dramatic victory, winning despite having only seven votes. The Congress’ candidate, Dheeraj Sahu, defeated the BJP’s Pradeep Sonthalia by a fraction of a value of votes, after the Election Commission took into consideration the second preference votes of three BJP MLAs, NDTV reported.
In Kerala, Veerendra Kumar of the Sharad Yadav-led faction of the Janata Dal (United) won the one seat that was contested. The Left Democratic Front backed him. The seat had fallen vacant after Kumar resigned from the Upper House in December after the JD(U), headed by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, joined the National Democratic Alliance.