Gujarat Legislators To Start Returning Tomorrow From Bengaluru Hideaway

Tuesday, 08 Aug, 2017

As the party's central leadership kept a close watch on the developments, a senior party functionary said, 'Vaghela is trying to teach the Congress a lesson for not fielding him as the chief ministerial face in the upcoming Assembly polls, while the BJP is making hay while the sun shines'. It can get him elected either by stacking up extra first-preference votes, or by depending on second-preference votes that come into play if first-preference votes fail to decide the victor, according to IE report. "So, I have not given my vote to Ahmed Patel", he said.

Ahmed Patel hopes to get the support of lone JD (U) MLA Chhotu Vasava in the Assembly but it remains to be seen what stand he takes especially after his party joined hands with the BJP in Bihar.

Meanwhile, according to BJP's estimates, Irani and Shah will get 45 first-preference votes each, while Rajput will get 31.

"We are moving towards a Congress free Gujarat". The AICC spokesperson reiterated that all Congress MLAs were united and would vote for Mr Patel in the August 8 election.

"Our party has asked us to support BJP in tomorrow's RS elections", Jadeja said. Don't forget what Congress has done for you.

The elections are significant due to the high-profile candidates involved - BJP president Amit Shah, Union minister Smriti Irani and senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel. This would mean a contestant has to muster 45 votes. While for the third seat BJP will need cross voting to win. But it is going to be a contest between Patel and Rajput.

At least 44 Gujarat Congress MLAs were camping at a resort in Bengaluru since July 29 to prevent their possible poaching by the ruling BJP ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections. However, it had just one instruction for its MLAs: be present.

As the Congress claims that it is confident of Ahmed Patel's victory in the Gujarat Rajya Sabha election, it surely must have come at a cost. "I am an optimist, I have total trust in my MLAs that they will vote for me". He said that since the party is a partner of UPA, NCP voted for Congress. "I want to stay in politics but not in Congress".

The voting would be held from 9 am to 4 pm on Tuesday.

In 182 member assembly, BJP has 122 seats including dissident Nalin Kotadiya.

To stem the rot before the crucial election in which the party was in a position to win one of the three seats at stake, the Congress flew 44 of its lawmakers to Bengaluru late last month.