A day ahead of the polling to the two vacant seats of Rajya Sabha in Gujarat, Congress on Thursday conducted a mock poll of all its state legislators. The party earlier in the day, to avoid horse trading and poaching of its MLAs, shifted all its MLAs to a resort in Palanpur area of Banaskatha district of the state.
Congress Senior Leader Arjun Modhwadia talking to reporters confirmed that move to shift MLAs to a resort is done to avoid any horse-trading ahead of the Rajya Sabha by-polls.
As many as 69 MLAs from Congress were shifted to Balaram resort in Palanpur which is 150 Kms away from Ahmedabad. Earlier, it was planned to shift all its legislators to a Hill Station, Mount Abu, in Rajasthan. However, the plan was later changed and all the state MLAs were shifted to a resort in Banaskatha.
The voting to fill two Rajya Sabha seats will take place on Friday and all the MLAs will be contesting their votes to fill the vacancies in the upper House of the parliament.
Two Rajya Sabha seats fell vacant after BJP Chief Amit Shah and BJP Leader Smriti Irani were elected to 17th Lok Sabha. BJP President Amit Shah who was in the Rajya Sabha from Gujarat has been elected as MP from Gandhinagar Lok Sabha Seat with a heavy margin of over 5 Lakh votes.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will be BJP’s nominee for Rajya Sabha from Gujarat in any one of the seat. While the party has named OBC youth leader from Mehsana, Jugalji Thakor (Lokhandwala) as its nominee on the second.
Thakor’s name came as a surprise to many. A 49-year-old Leader who is also the secretary Party’s OBC Cell. He is credited with playing an important role in strengthening the party among OBC communities in North Gujarat.