A race and resort politics for Rajya Sabha election | India News

NEW DELHI: Elections will be held on June 10 to fill 57 Rajya Sabha seats from 15 states falling vacant due to the retirement of members on different dates between June and August. Prominent among those retiring are Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Congress leaders Ambika Soni, Jairam Ramesh and Kapil Sibal, and BSP’s Satish Chandra Misra.
While 11 seats are falling vacant in Uttar Pradesh, six members each are retiring from Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra, five from Bihar and four each from Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Karnataka. Three members each from Madhya Pradesh and Odisha, two each from Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Punjab Jharkhand and Haryana, and one from Uttarakhand are also retiring.
Race: The Rajya Sabha will have 57 new members when it meets next, 41 of them have been elected unopposed from 11 states. A race is on for electing the rest 16 MPs from four states – Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Karnataka and Haryana.
Maharashtra: MLAs would vote on June 10 to elect six Rajya Sabha MPs – each would need 42 votes to win. The ruling MVA – Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress – has enough votes (151) to win three seats, and has fielded four candidates. BJP has 106 MLAs and can win two seats but has fielded three candidates setting up the fight for the sixth seat. The MVA needs 15 more votes to secure the seat, which BJP could pocket it with 13 more votes. This is why chief minister Uddhav Thackeray is reaching out to smaller parties and Independents – a group of 25 MLAs.
Rajasthan: Media baron Subhash Chandra is eyeing one of the four Rajya Sabha seats in Rajasthan. A candidate needs 41 votes to win. Congress has 108 MLAs. This means Congress needs 123 votes to win three. BJP has enough to win one seat and push Chandra into a contest.
Karnataka: A candidate needs 45 votes to win. BJP, with 121 MLAs, eyes three seats. Congress, with 70 MLAs, has fielded two candidates. JDS, with 32 MLAs, has fielded one.
Haryana: Another media baron – Kartikeya Sharma, supported by BJP – makes it a tight contest. He needs 31 votes to win – four more than the surplus of the BJP-led alliance. Congress has 31 but fears cross voting from its camp.
Resort: Fearing poaching, Congress shifted its MLAs to hotels or resorts in Rajasthan and Haryana. BJP followed suit in Rajasthan. In Maharashtra, Shiv Sena and NCP follow Congress’s model.

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