Hours after four Congress MLAs in Gujarat tendered their resignation, the Congress on Sunday (March 15) shifted 37 of its MLA to Jaipur to stop more MLAs from resigning ahead of March 26 Rajya Sabha poll. The 37 MLAs were taken to Hotel Shiv Vilas in Jaipur. It is learnt that five MLAs had sent their resignation but Speaker had accepted the resignation of only 4 MLAs.
The four Congress legislators, who have resigned from the party are — Mangal Gavit, JV Kakadiya, Somabhai Patel and Pradyuman Jadeja. The resignation of four MLAs means that the Congress now has only 69 MLAs in 182-member Gujarat Assembly. Notably, the Congress has named two candidates for Rajya Sabha poll, while the BJP has nominated three candidates. A candidate needs the support of at least 37 MLAs to win the election and the resignation of four Congress MLAs mean that it would be tough for both the Congress candidates to win the Rajya Sabha poll.
As three BJP members are retiring from the Upper House on April 9, it wanted to keep its tally intact and thus on Friday fielded Narhari Amin as the third candidate. It set the alarm bell in the Congress and hence the move to shift MLAs out of the state.
The BJP is banking on three votes from other parties, like the Bhartiya Tribal Party (BTP) and one from the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).
To get the required 37 votes for Amin, the BJP will need the support of 5 Congress MLAs and the party is hopeful that some Congress MLAs will cross-vote in order to ensure Amin's victory.