Bengaluru, June 10 (Ajit Weekly News) Major political parties in Karnataka are planning strategies to ensure victory of their respective candidates in the four Rajya Sabha seats of the state, polling for which got underway at 9 a.m on Friday.
While the ruling BJP could win two seats, opposition Congress is likely to bag one. There is tough competition for the fourth seat among all the three parties — ruling BJP, opposition Congress and regional party JD(S).
Congress State Unit President D.K. Shivakumar stated on Friday that his party is focused on getting all the votes of its MLAs. “The JD(S) leaders are trying to contact our legislators. They should know how the Congress has helped them,” he said.
Union Finance Minister Niramala Sitharaman, actor-turned politician Jaggesh from BJP and former Union minister Jairam Ramesh from Congress are likely to win easily. Mansoor Ali Khan from Congress, Kupendra Reddy from JD (S) and Lehar Singh from BJP are contesting for the fourth seat.
The JD(S) and Congress leaders indulged in verbal duel in connection with withdrawing their candidates from the elections. Opposition leader Siddaramaiah had even written to all JD (S) MLAs to support the Congress candidate.
Siddaramaiah claimed that Congress had helped JD (S) supremo H.D. Deve Gowda to become the Prime Minister and also made his son H.D. Kumaraswamy, Chief Minister in JD (S)-Congress coalition government. He also stressed that to defeat the communal BJP by supporting the Congress candidate.
Siddaramaiah had also appealed JD (S) MLAs to cast vote based on their conscience.
Sources in the party say that there are high chances of cross voting in the elections and surprise results will come out with regard to the election of the fourth candidate. Ruling BJP is hoping to get the benefit of JD (S) and Congress bickering and ensure winning of its candidate for this seat.
JD (S) party leader Deve Gowda though tried to get Congress support, his attempts remained futile, according to sources. BJP had given training for its MLAs to ensure that no vote goes waste.
As there are high chances of cross voting, the party leaders are monitoring the movements of MLAs. However, since it is not a secret ballot, the cross-voting will be known on the spot.
The elections will be held in Vidhana Soudha Room Number 106 between 9 am to 4 pm. The counting of votes would begin by 5 pm. The ruling BJP has strength of 122 MLA’s, Congress has 70 and JD (S) has 32.
–Ajit Weekly News