Hari versus Hari

It was Congress’ B. K. Hariprasad against JD(U)’s Harivansh Narayan Singh for the office of Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha. JD(U) is part of NDA.
M. Venkaiah Naidu wanted consensus about candidate but that did not happen. Some parties are unhappy with him.
There was talk of NCP’s Vandana Chavan being Opposition candidate. It is not clear why that did not happen. It seems BJD and TRS did not support her candidature and NCP did not want her to contest.
BJD President Orissa CM declared support to NDA candidate. He said Nitish Kumar had spoken to him. Narendara Modi and Amit Shah had spoken to him some days back.
Nitish Kumar called Arvind Kejriwal for support to JD(U) and NDA candidate. Arvind Kejriwal told Nitish Kumar AAP will not support a candidate supported by BJP. AAP wanted call from Rahul Gandhi to Arvind Kejriwal asking support for Congress candidate. There was no call. AAP decided to abstain. AAP had voted for Congress Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates, but Congress did not thank AAP. When Election Commission disqualified 20 AAP MLAs Congress members had distributed sweets.
YSRCP MP Vijayasai Reddy said both BJP and Congress have not fulfilled promises made to Andhra Pradesh so YSRCP is abstaining.
PDP decided to abstain.
SAD was unhappy that Naresh Gujrat was not NDA candidate but decided to support Harivansh Narayan Singh.
TRS supported Harivansh Narayan Singh.
Harivansh Narayan Singh got 125 votes and won the election. B. K. Hariprasad got 105 votes. That is 230 votes. Effective strength of Rajya Sabha was 244. It means 14 members did not vote.
It is consolation prize for Nitish Kumar who is unhappy at not having any JD(U) minister in central government. He was unhappy with BJP in Bihar. He wanted to end the alliance with BJP and go back to alliance with Congress and RJD. Tejashwi Yadav opposed it. Nitish Kumar is stuck with BJP.
It is a victory for BJP which was not a foregone conclusion.
Harivansh Narayan Singh is a first-time MP. His term is April 2014-2020. If he does not get re-elected his Deputy Chairmanship will be over in one year and eight months.

Updated: August 9, 2018 — 12:42 pm

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