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CM Sukhu-led Congress government may topple in Himachal, claims BJP's Jairam Thakur

Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Leader of Opposition and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Jairam Thakur on Tuesday claimed that the Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu-led Congress government is in a minority in the state.
When asked if the State BJP would demand a floor test, Thakur said, "The budget will be presented tomorrow. We will discuss the budget tomorrow and then we will see the situation there. But I can see that the government has lost the majority."
Voting is underway for a high-octane Rajya Sabha election battle in Himachal Pradesh on Tuesday, and the BJP has exuded hope in its candidate winning the poll.

67 out of the total 68 legislators have exercised their votes in the ongoing Rajya Sabha elections in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh. Sudarshan Singh Babloo, Congress MLA, has not come so far due to illness. He was hospitalised.
There is fierce competition in Himachal Pradesh for the sole Rajya Sabha seat between Congress candidate Abhishek Manu Singhvi and the BJP's Harsh Mahajan.
Harsh Mahajan is a three-time Congress MLA and former minister who resigned from the party in September 2022 ahead of the Assembly polls and joined the BJP.

Notably, the Congress has a clear majority with 40 out of 68 MLAs and the support of three independent MLAs. Despite the fact that the BJP, with 25 MLAs, is far behind in the number game, it has forced a contest by fielding Mahajan against Singhvi.
Earlier on Sunday, the Congress issued a whip to its MLAs to vote for party candidate Abhishek Manu Singhvi.

Following the whip, all the candidates will have to show the ballot to the authorised agent, who can declare a vote invalid if any MLA refuses to show the ballot.
On Monday, the BJP nominee complained to the Chief Election Commissioner, saying that the Congress has issued a three-line whip to its MLAs for the polls, which he said was unethical.
"Such a whip is not only unethical but also against the conducting of elections to the Rajya Sabha as it will affect the decision-making ability of the MLAs," Harsh Mahajan said in his complaint.
After the complaint was filed, the Congress hit out at BJP State Minister Harsh Wardhan Chauhan, who said that the charges to the poll body were a result of 'frustration' in the BJP.

Harsh Wardhan Chauhan, the Himachal Pradesh Minister, alleged that the BJP is planning "horse trading".
"This is the BJP's frustration because the number of MLAs is not in favour of the BJP. 40 MLAs are with Congress, and 3 are independent. The BJP only has 25 MLAs. ...even without numbers, BJP is fielding their candidate, which means they're planning horse trading..." Chauhan said.
Voting for 56 Rajya Sabha seats from 15 states, which are falling vacant in April, is being held on Tuesday.

The term for Rajya Sabha MPs is six years, and elections are held after every two years for 33 per cent of the seats. Currently, the Rajya Sabha has a strength of 245 members.
The Rajya Sabha MPs are elected by the MLAs in an indirect election through the system of proportional representation. They are mostly foregone conclusions, with elections being held unopposed and all party candidates sailing through. 

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