"Congress is making baseless allegations since morning", Ravi Shankar Prasad said. Ahmed Patel needs support of 45 legislators to win a berth in the Rajya Sabha. The third seat has become a virtual head to head fight between Ahmed Patel and BJP's Balwantsinh Rajput. Condemning the stoning of Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi's auto, he said that the BJP believes in defeating the Congress, but not in "stone pelting tactics".
The Assembly's strength is 176, out of which BJP has 122, which makes the victory of Shah and Irani confirm, suspense builds for the 3rd seat.
To do a straight math, today the Congress stands where it was in 1995, when it won 45 seats against the BJP's 121, when the BJP formed its first government in Gujarat under the chief ministership of Keshubhai Patel. While Ahmed Patel is very confident of victory as he said that the numbers favoured the Congress. There are other MLAs who can vote.
Before the six MLAs left Congress to join BJP, Congress veteran Shankersinh Vaghela also resigned from the party. Vaghela had earlier raised the banner of revolt against the grand old party and had said he would not resign from the party till the Rajya Sabha elections were held. But after Congress leaders approached it again and persevered, after high drama, the EC declared the two votes as invalid.
He further said that the party has requested the ECI to ensure their votes should not be counted and should be rejected. By 2001, the Congress had 60 seats, having wrested seats from BJP in the by-elections including urban seats like Sabarmati in Ahmedabad and Sayajigunj in Vadodara.
In an attempt to prevent cross-voting, Congress has issued a whip to its MLAs saying that cross-voting would result in disqualification from the party for six years.
'In Rajasthan, on many occasions, Vasundhara Raje forcibly made her MLAs camp at one place and on the day of voting, would personally go with them for polling.
Another Congress leader, Arjun Modhwadia, told reporters that they had requested the BJP and presiding officer to watch the purported video in which the MLAs can be seen revealing their votes to Shah, but the BJP had objected to watching the clip jointly with the Congress. NCP had a pre-poll alliance with the Congress during the 2012 assembly elections and managed to elect two legislators - Kandhal Jadeja and Jayant Patel.
"We never said that we will go alone". The vote is the personal property of an MLA (for the Rajya Sabha election).
Karnataka Minister D.K. Shivakumar was at the airport when the Congress legislatorstook a budget carrier after a week-long stay at a private resort near here.