Congress formally oust 8 cross-voter MLAs including Vaghela

Ahmedabad: Congress today formally suspended its 8 MLAs including former CM Shankersinh Vaghela, his MLA son Mahendrasinh and five of his staunch supporters for cross-voting and violation of party whip in yesterday’s Rajyasabha election.

Party spokesperson Manish Doshi said that apart from the Vaghelas, Raghavji Patel and Bhola Gohil (the votes of whom were cancelled by the election commission of showing their ballots to BJP candidates), C K Raulji, Amit Chaudhary, Dharmedrasinh Jadeja and Karamsinh Patel are suspended from the party for six years.

Notably apart from Karamsinh Patel who was part of the 44 flocked MLAs of the party and gave a bolt from the blue to it by cross voting, the other six were staunch supporters of Vaghela who himself had announced to quit Congress on July 21 on his 77 th birthday and already put in his papers as the leader of opposition.

Earlier on July 27 and 28, six other MLAs of Vaghela camp had resigned from Congress and the membership of assembly. 3 of them had joined BJP which had fielded one of them Balwantsinh Rajput as its third candidate in the polls.

Raghavji Patel has already said that he would join BJP soon.

The MLAs

Shankersinh Vaghela: Former state president and leader of opposition of Gujarat Congress, also former union minister for Textile in UPA government. Vaghela was Chief Minister of Gujarat in late 1990s with support of Congress.

Mahendrasinh Vaghela: He is Shankersinh’s son. He is MLA from Bayad in North Gujarat. He is father in law of Balwantsinh Rajput’s son.

Raghavji Patel: A Patidar community MLA from rural Jamnagar. He is up against the Congress party for last couple of months over the demand of more positions to Patidar community in State Congress. He is one of two Congress rebel MLAs whose votes were held invalid by Election Commission of India last night in Rajya Sabha elections. Raghavji wishes to join BJP soon.

Bhola Gohil: MLA from Jasdan in Rajkot district, he is from Koli community. He suddenly disappeared from Congress camp at a club in Rajkot where MLAs from Saurashtra were kept ahead of Rajya Sabha polls in order to prevent poaching. Gohil’s vote was also held invalid by ECI yesterday in Rajya Sabha polls for allegedly showing it to BJP candidates.

CK Raulji: He is old loyalist of Shankersinh Vaghela. He has also left the post of Panchmahal district Congress president.

Dharmendrasinh Jadeja: He is MLA from Devbhumi Dwarka district of Saurashtra region. He was sulking for last couple of months. He held a meeting with his supporters last Sunday and sought their opinion on his political future. Supporters pledged their support. Jadeja wishes to join the BJP.

Karamshi Patel: State Congress took its over 40 MLAs to Bangalore resort and later to another resort in Central Gujarat. karamshibhai was one of those 44 MLAs. However he surprised everyone by doing cross-voting yesterday in Rajya Sabha polls against Congress.


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