Congress MLA who cross voted listened to his “inner voice”, says Haryana CM


After Congress leader Ajay Makan lost Rajya Sabha election against BJP-backed independent candidate Kartikeya Sharma, Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar said that Congress MLA who cross voted listened to his “inner voice” while voting for BJP-backed media baron Kartikeya Sharma. Congress MLA Kuldeep Bishnoi cross voted while one Congress vote was declared invalid by the election officials in a major jolt to the grand old party's bid to win one seat from Haryana. Speaking to reporters in the Vidhan Sabha complex, Khattar thanked all those MLAs who voted for the BJP candidate and the Independent candidate.

"This in a way is a victory for the people of Haryana and a victory of democracy."

Referring to the cross-voting, Khattar said, "He voted listening to his inner conscience. I can say that he must have voted after being influenced by the policies and achievements of the Modi government. He did not bother what action the Congress will take...I congratulate him."

"The party will welcome him if he joins it," the BJP leader said when asked if the BJP's doors are open to him. "Hooda Sahab ka bhi swagat hai (even formers Congress chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda is welcome)." The counting of votes began past midnight and the results were announced after 2am on Saturday.

Confusion prevailed over the result after Congress tweeted victory message but deleted the tweet minutes later after a recount was called.

Out of 88 votes polled, 31 went to Panwar, 29 to Maken and 28 to Sharma. But 88 votes meant that 29.34 votes were needed for a win. BJP’s Panwar’s (31.00-29.34) 1.66 votes went to Kartikeya because he was the second choice of 31 votes while Ajay Makan remained at 29.00.

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