New Delhi, August 8: Today, 176 MLAs will decide the fate of BJP National President Amit Shah, union minister Smriti Irani, Balwantsinh Rajput, Ahmed Patel, Dilip Pandya. The crucial Rajya Sabha elections on three seats have been started from 9 am and will end at 4 pm. The counting will be held from 5 pm, an hour after the end of polling.
Gujarat Assembly Secretary D M Patel, who is also the returning officer for the Rajya Sabha election said that after the resignation of six Congress MLAs, there are total 176 MLAs eligible to vote. The election has been necessitated following the completion of the tenures of three existing members union minister Smriti Irani and Dilip Pandya of BJP and Ahmed Patel of Congress.
Meanwhile, the win of two of the 3 BJP candidates party President Amit Shah and Smriti Irani is almost certain, while the fate of the third party candidate Balwantsinh Rajput who joined BJP after resigning from Congress was hanging in balance along with the sole Congress candidate Ahmed Patel.
However, Congress needs the support of 45 MLAs for the victory of Ahmed Patel who is contesting for his fifth term for the upper house. In 182 member assembly, BJP has 122 seats including dissident Nalin Kotadiya.
While Congress has 51 MLAs along with 7 of Shankarinh Vaghela’s camp. NCP has 2 and JD U has 1 MLA in the house. According to the sources, NCP has also decided to vote for BJP candidates in today’s elections despite its alliance with Congress.
Victory for Ahmed Patel could restore confidence for the party ahead of the assembly elections to be held in December, a loss may see the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) moving closer to its 150-plus assembly seats target. BJP’s national president Amit Shah, who has set an ambitious target of winning over 150 of the 182 assembly seats in the polls, is contesting the Rajya Sabha elections for the first time.