The Congress plans to send former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan, NDTV reported on Tuesday. This came after talks between Congress and its ally Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam for a Rajya Sabha berth reportedly failed.
There are six vacancies in Rajya Sabha from Tamil Nadu for which elections will be held on July 18. Both All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the DMK have enough lawmakers to win three Rajya Sabha seats each. The DMK on Tuesday named candidates for the three seats in Tamil Nadu, giving one of the seats to ally V Gopalasamy or Vaiko of Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.
Previously, it was reported that DMK chief MK Stalin, who is also one of the most vocal supporters of Congress President Rahul Gandhi, had agreed to give one seat from his party’s share to Singh.
One of the prime reasons for Stalin’s change of plan is because Rahul Gandhi or United Progressive Alliance Chairperson Sonia Gandhi did not directly approach him, according to NDTV. Senior party leaders Ahmed Patel and Ghulam Nabi Azad spoke to their counterparts in the DMK, which party’s leadership was reportedly not happy about.
Singh’s 28-year-long tenure in the Upper House came to an end in June with Congress not in a position to get him re-elected from Assam.
The Congress had also decided to nominate the former prime minister from Gujarat, where two Rajya Sabha seats fell vacant following the elections of Bharatiya Janata Party chief Amit Shahand Union minister Smriti Irani to the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar and Amethi. However, they decided against it after Supreme Court rejected the request for simultaneous Rajya Sabha bye-polls.
A Rajya Sabha seat fell vacant in Rajasthan after the death of Bharatiya Janata Party’s state chief Madan Lal Saini on June 24. His tenure was till April 2024. The Congress, which took power in the state after winning the Assembly polls in December, is said to be confident of winning the seat.