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30 July 2017, 01:31 | Marta Robbins
Amit Shah, Smriti Irani to contest Rajya Sabha elections from Gujarat
On Thursday, three MLAs - Balwantsinh Rajput, Congress Chief Whip and MLA from Siddhpur, Tejashree Patel from Viramgam, and Vijapur legislator P.I. Patel submitted their resignations and joined the BJP.
Indian Health Minister J.P. Nadda announced Wednesday night that the BJP's parliamentary board, the party's highest policy making body, has decided that Shah will contest the Rajya Sabha (Upper House of Parliament) polls from the western state of Gujarat on August 8.
"We are all here because the BJP has created an atmosphere of fear in Gujarat, luring legislators with huge amounts of money, misusing government machinery to threaten legislators", Congress MLA Paresh Dhanani told The Hindu from the Bengaluru resort. Voting for Rajya Sabha takes place on August 8.
Congress MLAs at airport yesterday night. The proposal of Rajput as the third candidate is to ensure that Ahmed gets a tough fight in the upcoming election. MLA Nalin Kotadiya, NCP MLA Jayant Bosky and other Congress MLAs met the leaders during the day. The party hopes to capitalize the rift within an already tottering Congress which is trying to find its footing and launch its election campaign to unseat the long incumbent BJP. "It must be guaranteed that the biennial elections to Rajya Sabha are free and fair and MLAs are released", he said in Rajya Sabha.
Tension continues to simmer for Congress in Gujarat as the party lost six MLAs in just two days.
The Gujarat Congress on Friday suffered another blow as three more MLAs quit the party.
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Mr Vaghela, who was in the BJP in the nineties, had been unhappy that he wasn't going to be the Congress' chief ministerial candidate.
Meanwhile, the MLAs have also requested the party seniors to allow them to visit the historical sites in Mysuru and Madikeri, now that they have landed in Karnataka, said the source.
Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi told media persons that the MLAs were sent to Bengaluru as the BJP was indulging in "horsetrading of MLAs".
The three-time Lok Sabha MP from Bharuch in South Gujarat Ahmed Patel who has been in Parliament since 1977, needs 47 of the total 182 votes to enter Indian Parliament's Upper House, and he had enough numbers at the time of filing nomination papers. Rejecting the allegations, Amin said: "I have been in Ahmedabad for the past 48 hours, so where is the question of meeting anyone in Tapi".
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