RS results came as booster for BJP ahead of Prez polls

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The Rajya Sabha poll results came as a morale booster for the Modi government ahead of next month’s Presidential election. The BJP won 24 of the 57 Rajya Sabha seats on which biennial polls were held on June 10. The BJP fielded 22 candidates and supported two independents, one each in Rajasthan and Haryana.

After the declaration of result, the BJP has won 22 and managed victory of one of the independents supported by it. Fourteen BJP candidates won unopposed and three candidates each won from Karnataka and Maharashtra, and two candidates, one each from Rajasthan and Haryana. One BJP supported independent candidate won from Haryana.

But on the basis of the current strength of state assemblies, the BJP was only able to retain 20 seats but the party fielded two extra candidates, one each in Karnataka and Maharashtra, and supported two independents. The saffron camp managed victory of its two additional candidates and also ensured victory of one independent. The BJP’s impressive performance also highlights the party’s ability to get support from unaffiliated and disaffected legislators in the opposition camp.

Ahead of the Presidential poll, the Rajya Sabha result also shows cracks, dissension and lack of cohesion in the opposition camp in three states — Maharashtra, Karnataka and Haryana.

In an electoral college of around 10.86 lakh votes for Presidential polls, the BJP and its alliance partners are a little short of the halfway mark and the Rajya Sabha result has no major impact on its own votes. The BJP is hoping that BJD and YSR Congress will support its candidate.

A BJP insider said the party is happy with the result of 16 Rajya Sabha seats in four states where polling was held as it bagged one extra seat each in all states except Rajasthan and in Maharashtra the ruling Shiv Sena led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) suffered a huge setback despite being in power.

After being unable to pull the magic in the desert state, the BJP’s central disciplinary committee has issued show-cause notice to its Rajasthan MLA Shobharani Kushwaha. Kushwaha was suspended from the party’s primary membership for cross-voting in favour of Congress candidate Pramod Tiwari.

Polling for the Presidential election, if required, will be held on July 18 and counting will take place on July 21.

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