No successor to Ahmed Patel for Congress in RS bypolls in Gujarat

New Delhi [India], February 18 (ANI): The Congress is not contesting the Rajya Sabha bypolls from Gujarat and will not have a successor to late party leader Ahmed Patel from the state.

February 18, 2021

National

2 min

zeenews

By Siddharth Sharma
New Delhi [India], February 18 (ANI): The Congress is not contesting the Rajya Sabha bypolls from Gujarat and will not have a successor to late party leader Ahmed Patel from the state.
Two separate bypolls are being held to fill two seats due to demise of Ahmed Patel and Abhay Bhardwaj.
Thursday was the last date for filing nominations but Congress has not fielded any candidate. The two nominees of BJP are expected to get elected unopposed from the state.
Patel had been elected to the upper House five times from Gujarat, his native state, and served the Congress in various capacities including its treasurer. Patel had been elected to Rajya Sabha in 2017 in a hard-fought contest that evoked wide interest. He had suffered complications due to COVID-19 and died in November last year in a Gurgaon hospital.
Abhay Bhardwaj, a BJP MP and a practising lawyer from Rajkot who was elected to the upper house in June 2020, died in December while undergoing treatment for COVID-19.
Sources said Congress decided not to put a candidate as it did not have the numbers after the Election Commission’s decision to hold “two separate byelections” to fill the vacancies from the state.
In the 180-member Gujarat assembly, Congress has 65 MLAs and BJP 111.
Congress leaders said if bypolls for two seats were held together, they and BJP would have won one seat each.
A senior party leader, who did not want to be named, told ANI that the party didn’t want to get involved in the elections as numbers are not in favour of the party.
He said participation in bye-elections would have also distracted from party’s preparations for local body polls in the state as MLAs would have been involved in the process. (ANI)

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