In what might be a big blow for BSP supremo Mayawati and her party, BSP MLA Anil Singh announced to media persons that he had cross voted for the BJP in the ongoing Rajya Sabha elections:
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) March 23, 2018
As per reports, he also bragged about this act of his by proclaiming his support for UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who he referred to as “Maharajji”. He though expressed ignorance about other possible cases of cross voting in his party. Other reports claimed that the MLA from Purwa met with Yogi on Thursday night, following which he voted for the BJP after listening to his “inner voice”.
This move might signal trouble for the BSP which is hoping to elect its singular candidate Bhim Rao Ambedkar to the Rajya Sabha. The BSP was earlier bolstered by the support of seven Congress MLAs in the state. Mathematically, BSP needs a total 37 votes for its candidate to win. In total it had 19 in form of its MLAs (reduced to 18 now). The party has additionally been supported by seven Congress, nine SP and one RLD votes, resulting in it theoretically fall short of 2 votes.
In total there are 10 Rajya Sabha seats in the state, with the BJP fielding nine candidates and the SP, BSP fielding one each. The voting started at 9:00 AM today, at the Tilak Hall in UP’s Vidhan Sabha building. BJP has expressed its confidence in winning its nine seats.
Apart from Singh, the BJP has also benefited via cross voting from Samajwadi Party legislator Nitin Agarwal whose father Naresh Agarwal joined the BJP recently. After casting his vote he commented that unfortunately the SP preferred Jaya Bachchan who “entertains the people” instead of Naresh Agarwal who “serves the society”.
The counting for the polls would begin at 5:00 PM on Friday.