Bengaluru, July 17 (IANS) In all, 222 lawmakers of the ruling Congress, opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) and Independents on Monday voted in the presidential election at Vidhana Soudha here, said an official.
“Barring two JD-S legislators, 222 MLAs and one Congress Lok Sabha member (Prakash Hukkeri) voted in the presidential poll at the secretariat,” state Legislature Secretary S. Murthy told reporters here.
Of the 225-member legislative assembly, which constitutes the electoral college for the presidential poll in the state, the ruling Congress has 124, including the Speaker, BJP 44, JD-S 40, Independents 9, BSR-C 3, KJP 2, one each from KMP and SKP and one nominated.
“Our two legislators — Y.S.V. Dutta could not vote due to bereavement in his family, and Cheluvaraswamy is abroad on personal visit,” JD-S spokesman Ramesh told IANS.
A BJP spokesperson said all its 44 members, including former state Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar and five members of its two allies (BSR-C & KJP) cast their vote for the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate Ram Nath Kovind.
“We had requested the nine Independents and members of the regional parties like KMP and SKP to vote in favour of Kovind,” the spokesperson told IANS.
A Congress spokesman said all its 124 members, including Speaker Koliwad, voted for joint opposition nominee Meira Kumar.
The JD-S lawmakers also voted for Kumar.
Of the 40 Parliament lawmakers from the southern state, 27 Lok Sabha and 12 Rajya Sabha members voted in the Parliament House in New Delhi.
Ahead of the voting, the Congress and the BJP held legislature party meetings and directed their members to vote in favour of their nominated candidates — Kumar and Kovind.
Election Commission Observer Arun Singhal supervised the polling.
Two boxes were placed in Room No. 106 of the state secretariat for the two contestants and the lawmakers were given election marker pens to tick on the names of their preferred candidates.
Each MLA in the state has a value of 131 votes and each Lok Sabha member 208, which translates into 29,334 and 5,824 votes from the state, respectively.