A total of 108 members of the Assembly voted, even as two expelled Congress MLAs could not cast their votes.

With comfortable strength TRS wins all three Rajya Sabha seats in TelanganaImage: Facebook/Telangana CMO
news Politics Saturday, March 24, 2018 - 07:25

Telangana's ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) bagged all three Rajya Sabha seats for which polling was held on Friday.

B Prakash, J Santosh Kumar and AB Lingaiah Yadav were elected to the Upper House. Congress candidate and former union minister P Balram Naik was defeated, officials said.

A total of 108 members of the Assembly voted. Prakash secured 33 votes while Santosh Kumar and Yadav polled 32 votes each. The Congress candidate got only 10 votes as independent member D. Prakash Reddy's vote was declared invalid by the Election Commission.

The poll panel took the decision after the complaint by the Returning Officer that Prakash Reddy showed his vote to the Congress agent before casting it.

The election became inevitable after the Congress fielded a candidate though the TRS had comfortable strength in the 119-member Assembly to win all three seats.

The TRS has 91 MLAs while the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM), which has seven members, also supported the ruling party.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) (five members), Telugu Desam Party (TDP) (two) and Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) (one) abstained from voting.

Two Congress members -- Komatireddy Venkat Reddy, SA Sampath Kumar - could not vote as they were expelled from the House last week for allegedly hurling headphones during the Governor's address, injuring Legislative Council Chairman Swamy Goud in his eye.

Though Reddy and Kumar had challenged their expulsion in the High Court, the Election Commission clarified that they could not cast their votes. This has left the Congress with just 11 MLAs, far short of at least 30 required to get its candidate elected.

The Congress issued a whip to all its members including six who crossed over to the TRS to vote for its candidate. However, those who violate the whip will not attract penalties of the anti-defection law as MLAs are free to vote according to their choice.

 

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