Rajasthan Rajya Sabha elections: Congress and BJP are concerned about ‘horse-trading’

The ruling Congress Party and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wrote to the chief election commissioner on Wednesday, expressing their concerns about “horse-trading” in the Rajya Sabha elections. In a separate letter to the Enforcement Directorate (ED), the BJP accused the government of misusing its machinery and resources, as well as tapping lawmakers’ phones, and demanded an investigation.

Mahesh Joshi, a Congress leader, has requested a First Information Report against Independent candidate Subhash Chandra and top BJP leaders, alleging that they are attempting to misappropriate government agencies such as the ED. “As a result, a complaint was filed with the ED.” He claimed that Congress has 126 votes, compared to the 123 needed to win three seats. He also stated that Chandra has 33 votes and he is eight votes short.

Chandra claimed on Tuesday that he has the support of eight lawmakers who will vote in his favour. Ghanshyam Tiwari, a member of the BJP’s 71-member legislature, has been nominated as the party’s candidate. It also supports Chandra.

Joshi accused the BJP and Chandra of intimidation and horse-trading. “The BJP and Chandra are arrogantly claiming cross-voting of legislators…the Election Commission and the police must take appropriate action,” he said.

Gulab Chand Kataria, a BJP leader, accused Congress of abusing government machinery and resources to intimidate legislators. According to the BJP, there could be black money at the Congress lawmakers’ hotel in Udaipur. It demanded that “corrupt practises” be addressed in order to ensure free and fair elections.

On Sunday, Congress asked the Anti-Corruption Bureau to remain vigilant in the run-up to the Rajya Sabha elections and prevent any attempt at horse-trading.