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BJP’s Rajya Sabha 11: How the BJP’s move in Uttar Pradesh sent a panic wave in opposition

Arti Ghargi

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Uttar Pradesh

With total 312 MLAs, BJP can easily send eight candidates to Rajya Sabha from the state of Uttar Pradesh. However, BJP will still have 28 votes left.

 

In 2014, the Bharatiya Janata Party stormed to power winning 282 seats. However, the party still lacked the numbers in Rajya Sabha. However, BJP’s win in the consequent assembly elections has given them a chance to increase their numbers in the Upper House of the parliament as well.

Recently, the party announced its list of candidates for Rajya Sabha polls. Total 58 seats from 16 states and a by-election for 1 seat from Kerala will be held on March 23, 2018. However, the most number of seats (10) being vacated are from Uttar Pradesh.

While for Congress, SP and BSP the Rajya Sabha elections are crucial to maintaining their presence in the Upper House; BJP has hit a masterstroke by fielding one more candidate leaving the opposition startled.

Uttar Pradesh Assembly numbers:

The Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections conducted in 2017 were swept by the saffron party. Going beyond the magic figure, the BJP won total 312 seats in the 403 seat assembly. The SP emerged second winning 47 seats, while BSP had to be satisfied with only 19 seats. Congress couldn’t even reach the two-digit number and won only seven seats. While Rashtriya Lok Dal won only one seat, independent candidates grabbed three seats.

Rajya Sabha seat calculation:

Uttar Pradesh, being the biggest and most populous state in the country has 31 seat representation in Rajya Sabha. For a candidate to win, 37 preferential votes from the MLAs are needed. This year, the term of as much as 10 members is coming to an end. The retiring members include Naresh Agarwal who recently dumped SP and joined BJP, Munquad Ali, Jaya Bachchan, BJP’s Vinay Katiyar, Kiranmay Nanda, Alok Tiwari, Pramod Tiwari, Darshan Singh Yadav and Munvvar Saleem Choudhury.

BJP has currently fielded 11 candidates including Finance Minister Arun Jaitley while SP has fielded Jaya Bachchan and BSP has fielded Bhimrao Ambedkar. With one independent candidate filing nominations for Rajya Sabha polls, the total number of candidates in the fray has gone up to 14.

Current Equation:

Here it is important to understand the number game. With total 312 MLAs, BJP can easily send eight candidates to Rajya Sabha. However, BJP will still have 28 votes left. With 46 votes remaining after the exit of Nitin Agarwal, SP can elect one candidate to Rajyasabha. It will have nine more votes remaining. BSP, on the other hand, still needs to gather support. The pre-poll alliance between the arch-rivals BSP and SP for Rajya Sabha election stemmed from this need. Congress has already declared its support to BSP’s candidate.

With SP’s nine, Congress’ seven and 19 votes from the own party MLAs, the BSP is able to achieve 35 votes, still two votes less than the required. For this, BSP may turn to small parties like RLD and independents.

However, with BJP fielding three more candidates, Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samajwadi Party are clearly baffled. BJP is also pinning hopes on Naresh Agarwal to bring the votes of more 10-15 MLAs. This would clearly reduce both BSP and SP’s chances of winning.

Here’s the list of BJP’s 11 candidates:

Rajya Sabha

Image Source: Twitter BJP

 

Uttar Pradesh

Image Source: Twitter

The last day for filing of nominations was Monday. March 15 is the last date for withdrawal of candidature.

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BJP accuses CM Kumaraswamy of sedition; seeks action

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HD Kumaraswamy

Bengaluru | The Karnataka BJP on Friday accused Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy of sedition and sought action over his remark asking people to “rise in revolt” against the saffron party for its alleged attempts to destabilise the state government.

In its complaint to the state Director General of Police (DGP) Neelamani N Raju, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alleged that the chief minister had violated section 124(A) (relating to sedition) and other sections of the IPC.

Holding placards and raising slogans against former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda and his sons, including Kumaraswamy, the BJP staged a protest near the Mysore Bank Circle, the nerve centre of the city, terming the chief minister’s remark as a “call for anarchy.”  “Kumaraswamy, who holds a constitutional post, has given a call for people to rise in revolt,” BJP MP from Udupi Chikkamagaluru constituency Shobha Karandlaje said.

Talking to reporters after submitting the complaint to the DGP, she said the person who was supposed to protect the Constitution and citizens of the country was “provoking” people. “Whatever was in Kumaraswamy’s mind finally came out in the form of words,” the BJP MP charged.

Another BJP parliamentarian Prahlad Joshi termed the statement as the “most irresponsible and unpardonable offence” and said the chief minister’s choice of words displayed his state of mind.

Upset over the alleged toppling game of the BJP, an angry Kumaraswamy had on Thursday warned BJP to be restrained in its speech about Gowda and his family, saying he can even ask people to rise in revolt against it if it continued to disturb Congress-Janata Dal-Secular coalition government headed by him.

Launching a no-holds-barred attack on state BJP chief B S Yeddyurappa, Kumaraswamy had said: “If you dig too much (into our affairs), then we too have many things at our disposal”.”Government is in our hand. Don’t I have the authority to do whatever I can? I caution him to be careful,” he added. Hitting back, Yeddyurappa said if the state government was with Kumaraswamy, the central government was with the BJP.

Soon after, Congress and JD(S) activists staged a demonstration outside Yeddyurappa’s house raising slogans against him for his alleged attempts to destabilise the coalition government.

The BJP condemned the demonstration, saying that the state government was trying to muzzle the voice of the Opposition, which showed its “anti-democratic face”.

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Sanatan Sanstha sends defamation notice to NCP’s Nawab Malik

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NCP

Mumbai | The right-wing organisation Sanatan Sanstha has sent a legal notice to NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik over a news report, alleging defamation.

Malik’s statements in a report published by a Marathi newspaper on August 11, carrying the headline “Sanatan Sanstha (involved) in terror activities – Nawab”, caused “irreparable loss” to the Sanstha and lowered its reputation, it said. While the notice, dated September 17, sought damages of Rs 10 crore from Malik and the newspaper, the NCP leader said he would fight the organisation in the court. The Sanstha’s spokesperson confirmed that it has sent the notice.

The Sanatan Sanstha was recently in the news when it was found that Vaibhav Raut, one of the persons arrested by the Maharashtra police for an alleged conspiracy to carry out blasts in the state, had purportedly mentioned on his Facebook page that he was the Sanstha’s member.

While the Sanstha denied any connection with Raut, Opposition NCP and Congress demanded a ban on it for alleged links to terror activities. Malik tweeted Friday that he would give a reply to the notice and expose the Sanstha. He was “grateful” to the Sanstha for giving him an opportunity to prove his allegations in the court, he said.

The organisation had come under the scanner earlier when the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested Dr Virendra Tawde of Hindu Janjagruti Samiti, the Sanstha’s offshoot, in the rationalist Narendra Dabholkar murder case.

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Opposition criticises Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s tweet on SC/ST act

News Desk

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Shivraj-Singh-Chouhan

Bhopal | Various opposition leaders have criticised the Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on his tweet related to the controversial SC/ST act.

Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Thursday tweeted that the SC/ST act won’t be misused in Madhya Pradesh and no one would be arrested without proper investigation.  When asked about  whether the state government would bring an ordinance in lieu of the central government ordinance, Shivraj Singh Chouhan said, “The interests of all sections of the upper caste, backward classes, Scheduled Castes and tribes will be kept safe and whatever the complaint will come, no one will be arrested only after investigation.”

Dalit leader including BJP’s Udit Raj and RPI’s Ramdas Athavale have asked the Madhya Pradesh CM to take back his statement as it would lead an outrage in the minds of Dalit community.  Speaking to media, BJP MP Udit Raj has asked Chouhan to reconsider his statement. He said,” I am feeling uneasy by the Chief Minister’s statement. On one hand, the government tries to strengthen the law while the Chief Minister dilutes it.  There is again disappointment within the society.”

Union Minister Ramdas Athawle while responding to Chauhan statement said, “Shivraj Singh Chouhan might have given this statement to please the upper caste but he should not say any such thing which should create a sense of fear or insecurity in the dalit community.” Athawale further added that Chouhan should withdraw his statement because the Chief Minister is for both the backward and the backward.

Earlier the Supreme Court had directed that the case can only be registered after proper investigation, However, the Central government issued an ordinance which changed the judgement of the Supreme court. The ordinance stated that a complaint can be lodged without any inquiry on the complaint from the person of SC-ST society and the accused will be jailed for six months.

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