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Cong checkmates JDS’ bid, to plug poaching in RS polls

Bengaluru: Despite not having the required number of MLAs, Congress has fielded its second candidate in the Rajya Sabha election from Karnataka in a bid to checkmate JDS’ plans to field its candidate.
The JDS is planning to field former MP Kupendra Reddy as candidate by using additional BJP votes.
“We have our calculations. Last RS elections we had not fielded the second candidate out of respect for the JDS patriarch HD Deve Gowda,” Karnataka Congress President DK Shivakumar told reporters here.
As per total strength of the state assembly, BJP can win two seats and Congress one, requiring 45 votes of the MLAs for each candidate.
After electing two Rajya Sabha candidates, BJP will be left with an additional 29 votes and Congress with 24 extra votes after electing its candidate.
The JDS has 32 votes which is inadequate to fetch them a victory on one seat.
Karnataka Congress Working President Saleem Ahmed said the JDS should display its secular credentials by voting a young and an educated Muslim candidate fielded by the party.
Election to Rajya Sabha from Karnataka has been necessitated by the retirement of incumbent MPs Nirmala Sitharaman, KC Ramamurthy (both BJP) and Jairam Ramesh (Congress).
After Congress MP Oscar Fenandez’s death the Rajya Sabha seat from Karnataka has fallen vacant.
The BJP has fielded Sitharaman and actor-turned-politician Jaggesh for the two seats it can assuredly win, while Congress has fielded Jairam Ramesh and Karnataka Congress General Secretary Mansoor Ali Khan. (UNI)

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