Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman election: Rift in Akali Dal-BJP ties over NDA’s JDU candidate (Photo PTI)
Ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) alliance problem seemed to be deepening on Tuesday with the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) expressing unhappiness over Amit Shah’s decision to nominate JD-U MP Harivansh Narayan Singh as NDA’s candidate for the post of Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman.
“They first told our candidate Naresh Gujral to prepare. He was preparing&suddenly they nominated JDU's candidate without informing us,” ANI quoted SAD leader Sukhdev S Dhindsa as saying.
Dhindsa, however, said that his party doesn’t have any problem with Singh’s nomination as Nitish Kumar’s JDU was a “friend”.
We don't have any problem with candidate as JDU is our friend but 1st they told our candidate Naresh Gujral to prepare. He was preparing&suddenly they nominated JDU's candidate without informing us: Sukhdev S Dhindsa after Shiromani Akali Dal's meeting over RS Vice chairman polls pic.twitter.com/fujeLODZQ2— ANI (@ANI) August 7, 2018
The election for the post of Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman will be held at 11 am on August 9. The Opposition has picked Vandana Chavan, a 57-year-old MP from Sharad Pawar's NCP for the post of Rajya Sabha Deputy Speaker.
To win the election, a candidate needs 123 votes, but the majority mark would bring down if the Akali Dal, the Shiv Sena and Naveen Patnaik's Biju Janata Dal MPs remained absent, the NDA numbers will come down to 110 and fice short of the revised majority mark of 115.
The united Opposition, on the other hand, has 119 MPs in their favour, including Chandrababu Naidu's TDP and YSR Congress. However, Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party and Mehbooba Mufti's PDP also hinted that they will support the Opposition's candidate.