Ranchi, March 30 (IANS) Backtracking from its stand that it would abstain, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Friday voted in favour of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) candidate in the Rajya Sabha polls.
Giving in to the request of ruling alliance partner JMM, the BJP agreed to vote for the former’s Sanjiv Kumar. BJP legislators, including Chief Minister Arjun Munda, voted in favour of the JMM candidate.
Another ruling alliance partner, All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU), also voted in favour of the JMM candidate.
With BJP and AJSU’s support, the victory of the JMM candidate is a foregone conclusion.
BJP had announced it would abstain from voting after central leaders had expressed unhappiness over supporting independent candidate Anshuman Mishra. Mishra withdrew his nomination last week after the BJP decided to abstain from voting.
Congress, the second main contender in the poll, is likely to win the other Rajya Sabha seat from Jharkhand. The party managed to secure the support of five Rashtriya Janata Dal legislators.
Of the 13 Congress legislators, one – Aanat Pratap Deo – voted in favour of Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik (JVM-P) candidate Praveen Singh.
In the 81-member assembly, BJP and JMM have 18 legislators each, Congress and the JVM-P have 13 and 11 legislators respectively, and the RJD and AJSU have five each. The rest are independents or belong to smaller parties.