The counting of votes for Rajya Sabha elections in four States on Friday got delayed as both the BJP and the Congress complained to the Election Commission of alleged cross voting and violation of protocol.

All three candidates of the Congress — Pramod Tiwari, Mukul Wasnik and Randeep Surjewala — won from Rajasthan while one seat went to the BJP, the political parties said while official confirmation from EC was awaited. BJP-backed independent candidate, Zee chairman Subhash Chandra, lost in the State.

In Karnataka, three BJP contestants — Nirmala Sitharaman, Lehar Singh Siroya and Jaggesh — won, while one seat went to Congress’ Jairam Ramesh. The Janata Dal (Secular) did not win any seats.

Voting was held for 16 Rajya Sabha seats across Maharashtra, Haryana, Rajasthan and Karnataka where the number of candidates exceeded the seats going to polls. As many as 41 candidates in Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Telangana, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand were declared elected unopposed on June 4.

‘Protocol violation’

The vote counting for seats from Maharashtra was delayed after the BJP alleged that three MLAs from the ruling Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress combine flouted voting rules. The BJP approached the EC demanding that these votes be considered invalid.

State BJP leaders alleged that Cabinet Ministers Jitendra Awhad (NCP) and Yashomati Thakur (Congress), along with Sena MLA Suhas Kande, violated the model code for voting. Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut who is one of the contestants, said the BJP had indulged in foul play. For six Rajya Sabha seats in the State, the BJP has fielded three candidates, the Shiv Sena two and NCP and Congress one each.

In the polls for the two seats from Haryana, 89 legislators voted while independent legislator Balraj Kundu abstained. Former minister Krishan Lal Panwar is the BJP candidate while Ajay Maken is the nominee of Congress. Media baron Kartikeya Sharma contested as an independent candidate.

Kar’nataka’

In Karnataka, the division between Opposition Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) led to the ruling BJP bagging three seats. JD(S) supremo and former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy lashed out at the Congress and said it was clear to the people that they have not stood by the mantra of secular unity.

In the 224-member Assembly, BJP has 120 members, Congress has 69 and JDS has 32 apart from two independents, with one seat vacant.

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