The Election Commission, being a "constitutional watchdog" for ensuring free and fair elections has committed a grave travesty by issuing administrative instructions which fly in the face of constitutional and legal provisions, Parmar's petition contends. The option has been given in 25 by-elections to Rajya Sabha since then, in consonance with the Supreme Court directive that came on September 27, 2013.
The BJP is on an unprecedented witch-hunt just to win one Rajya Sabha seat, tweeted Patel, who is Congress president Sonia Gandhi's political adviser. The saffron party is fielding Balwantsinh Rajput, former Congress Chief Whip in the Gujarat Assembly, against senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel in the polls to the Upper House.
The BJP has demanded that the Election Commission withdraw its direction for the use of the 'None of the Above (NOTA)' option in the August 8 elections to the Rajya Sabha from Gujarat.
Raising the matter in Rajya Sabha, Congress leader Anand Sharma had said it is now becoming a trend of the Government to blatantly misuse powers of the state.
The Congress has been protesting since the Election Commission has notified the NOTA option. The Commission has said that from January, 2014, biennial elections to Rajya Sabha covering all States and 25 by-elections to the Rajya Sabha have been held. Shivakumar is hosting the Congress MLAs at a resort near Bengaluru. "These (Congress) MLAs chose to stand by the party even when they were offered Rs15 crore".
This is intriguing because Congress has more reason to worry if its Gujarat MLAs vote NOTA.
In the Lok Sabha, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said "In Gujarat, Congress had 57 members and the support of four others, but BJP broke away five members". Congress led Siddaramaiah Government is ruling Karnataka who were always criticising about the BJP led Central Government. The defiant voter can continue to be an MLA and his vote can also not be invalidated for defying party directions, the EC rules say. Gujarat assembly secretary DM Patel notified the use of NOTA on Monday prompting the Congress to see red.
Refuting Congress Party's claim, IT department has denied that its raid at Shivakumar's residence and a private resort has anything to do with the Gujarat's Congress MLAs.
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