Gujarat: 7 Congress MLAs cross-vote for Droupadi Murmu

Times of India | 2 weeks ago | 22-07-2022 | 05:17 am

Gujarat: 7 Congress MLAs cross-vote for Droupadi Murmu

GANDHINAGAR: Seven Congress MLAs from Gujarat appear to have defied the party line and voted for National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate Droupadi Murmu in the presidential election, the results revealed on Thursday. The non-compliance from the legislators comes ahead of the assembly polls scheduled to be held later this year. Congress has begun an internal inquiry to identify the MLAs who cross-voted in the July 18 election. The Congress has 63 MLAs in the assembly and support from the lone independent MLA. When the results of the presidential election were announced, it was found that only 57 MLAs voted for Congress-supported candidate Yashwant Sinha. This means that seven MLAs voted against the party line. In contrast, the NDA presidential nominee received 121 votes, while there are only 111 BJP MLAs in the Gujarat assembly. Apart from the seven Congress MLAs who voted for Murmu, two BTP MLAs and an NCP MLA also voted for her, ensuring her votes from 10 non-BJP MLAs. GPCC president Jagdish Thakor said that cross-voting by seven party MLAs was quite “shocking”. “I am astounded by the breach of trust by our own MLAs. The BJP has been indulging in unfair means to win over our MLAs, but this is shocking. We will certainly conduct an inquiry into the matter to identify and take strict action against them. They will be removed from the party.” BJP spokesperson Yamal Vyas said, “Yet again, Congress MLAs have acted in the interest of the nation. “Many Congress MLAs were in support of a tribal woman being nominated as the presidential candidate and voted for Droupadi Murmu. Congress needs to understand the sentiments of its MLAs.” Of the total 182 seats in the Gujarat assembly, two have been vacated following the demise of two MLAs — Asha Patel and Anil Joshiyara — and one has been vacated following the recent resignation of Congress MLA Ashwin Kotwal. The High court has set aside the election of Dwarka MLA Pabhubha Manek.

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