BJP Wins 8 seats, Samajwadi Party Two In Rajya Sabha Polls In Uttar Pradesh

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New Delhi:

The BJP pulled off a stunning extra seat in the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh today — with some help from Jayant Chaudhary’s Rashtriya Lok Dal and a handful of Samajwadi Party rebels. The party won eight of the state’s 10 seats, two went to the Samajwadi Party, which was expecting three.

The second bonus seat won by the BJP was in Congress-ruled Himachal Pradesh, with cross-voting by six Congress MLAs.

In Uttar Pradesh, the BJP had forced an election by fielding an eighth candidate for the state’s 10 seats. The numbers decreed that seven seats would go to the BJP and three to the Samajwadi Party.
But as early as yesterday, BJP leaders started claiming in private that a clutch of Samajwadi Party MLAs would cross-vote today. The numbers quoted varied between 7 and 10.

By late evening, the writing was on the wall, with eight MLAs staying away from a meeting called by party chief Akhilesh Yadav. This morning, ahead of elections, the party’s chief whip resigned.

The actual voting today was replete with suspense and drama, as seven members of the Samajwadi Party cross-voted. The vote of one SP MLA was deemed invalid. After the voting, five Samajwadi Party MPs met Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

The eight BJP candidates who won are former Union Minister RPN Singh, former MP Chaudhary Tejveer Singh, Amarpal Maurya, Sangeeta Balwant , BJP spokesperson Sudhanshu Trivedi, former MLA Sadhna Singh, Naveen Jain and Sanjay Seth.

Samajwadi Party’s Jaya Bachchan and Ramji Lal Suman won. Alok Ranjan, the third candidate fielded by the Samajwadi Party, lost to the BJP.

“We had been saying from the beginning that all 8 candidates of the BJP will win,” said Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Pradhan Maurya.

“I congratulate all the winning candidates. Two SP candidates have also won. So, congratulations to Akhilesh Yadav too. BJP’s vijay yatra that began in Rajya Sabha will continue in Lok Sabha and then go on till Vidhan Sabha elections and even further,” he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

SP chief Akhilesh Yadav said disciplinary action will be taken against MLAs if they had cross voted.

“Not everybody has the guts to stand against the government. Pressure is put on everybody, is there anyone who doesn’t know that BJP would go to any extent to win?” he told reporters.

“The BJP was dishonest during the Chandigarh elections also… When it comes to UP, BJP did everything to get votes and those who left, might not have had the guts to stand against the government,” he added.

The shock defeat was a blow for Opposition bloc INDIA, which was looking for two more seats in the Upper House in this round of election. The NDA is inching towards majority in the 245-member Rajya Sabha – crucial when it comes to passing or blocking of bills.

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