Congress candidate Ajay Maken loses Haryana Rajya Sabha election, Independent candidate makes major upset

In a big jolt to Congress and its alliance, Congress leader Ajay Maken lost the Rajya Sabha election in Haryana as voting was held for two seats on Friday. While one seat went to BJP, the other went to independent candidate. Contrary to the speculations, Ajay Maken of Congress lost the election. BJP’s Krishna Lal Panwar and independent Karthikeya Sharma have won the election in an interesting battle. 89 out of 90 MLAs cast their votes for the two Rajya Sabha seats. Balraj Kundu announced not to vote.

The counting of votes was stopped for over 7 hours following some accusations from BJP candidate Krishan Lal Panwar and independent candidate Karthikeya Sharma. However, late night, the Election Commission granted permission to start the counting of votes again. In fact, BJP candidate Panwar and independent candidate Sharma had alleged that Congress MLAs Kiran Choudhary and Bibi Batra showed their ballot papers to unauthorized persons and the episode was recorded on camera.

The BJP and the Congress had reached the Central Election Commission with their respective arguments. BJP leaders and independent candidate Karthikeya Sharma had raised questions on the functioning of Returning Officer R K Nandal. Kartthikeya alleged that Nadal seems to be working in the interest the Congress candidate. The votes of Kiran Choudhary and Bibi Batra should be cancelled, he demanded.

On the complaint of the BJP, the Commission had called for the video recording of the voting process. After investigation, the Election Commission cleared the air for the counting of votes. It may be mentioned that even in the 2016 Rajya Sabha elections, Nandal had been in controversies for ink scandal. By changing the pen itself, 14 votes of Congress were reportedly cancelled and the Election Commission had set up an inquiry against Nandal.

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