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Gujarat Rajya Sabha polls Live: Shankersinh Vaghela says he didn’t vote for Ahmed Patel

LiveMint logoLiveMint 08-08-2017 Livemint

New Delhi: After weeks of dramatic political developments, Gujarat is all set for an on-the-edge-of-the-seat contest in the Rajya Sabha elections which will decide, among others, the fate of Ahmed Patel, the influential political secretary to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi.

It is after a gap of about two decades that a contest is happening in Rajya Sabha polls in Gujarat, where official nominees of major parties used to get elected unopposed, after the BJP fielded a Congress rebel against Patel, who is seeking a fifth term.

The ruling BJP has fielded party chief Amit Shah, Union minister Smriti Irani and Balwantsinh Rajput, who till recently was Congress’s chief whip in the House, for the three RS seats.

While its first two candidate will sail through, the BJP will have to manage extra votes to ensure Rajput beats Patel.

Here are the latest updates and developments from Gujarat Rajya Sabha polls:

■ Ahmed Patel: “When I am confident, party is confident we are going to win. Wait for the result to come.” (ANI)

On Monday, Ahmed Patel, who met Congress MLAs after they returned from their Bengaluru sojourn, said he was confident of his victory. “This poll is not at all about anyone’s prestige. I have full faith in my MLAs. Apart from these 44 (Congress) legislators, two of NCP, one of JD-U would vote for me,” Patel told reporters on Monday. (PTI)

■ Shankersinh Vaghela: “I have not voted for Ahmed Patel as the Congress party is not going to win.” (ANI)

Jab Cong jeetne waali hai hi nahi, vote bina matlab Cong ko dene ka matlab nahi tha. Humne Ahmed Patel ko vote nahi diya:Shankersinh Vaghela

— ANI (@ANI_news)

■ According to Election Commission officials, a candidate would require one-fourth of the total number of votes plus one to get elected. This would mean a contestant has to muster 45 votes.

The MLAs have to give their preferential votes indicating first choice, second, third, fourth (as per number of candidates) or they can choose NOTA, they said. (PTI)

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