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Chhotubhai Vasava, Lone JDU MLA In Gujarat, Who May Emerge Kingmaker

Chhotubhai Vasava had kept everyone guessing till the last moment, making both sides wish that he would vote in their favour.

Meghdoot Sharon | CNN-News18

Updated:August 8, 2017, 7:43 PM IST
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Chhotubhai Vasava, Lone JDU MLA In Gujarat, Who May Emerge Kingmaker
JD(U) MLA Chhotubhai Vasava (centre) didn't even mind admitting that he was speaking to both the sides till the last moment. (Photo: CNN-News18 TV grab)
Gandhinagar: Chhotubhai Vasava, the lone JD(U) MLA in Gujarat, emerged as a kingmaker in Rajya Sabha election on Tuesday which became more of an ego battle between Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's aide Ahmed Patel and Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Man Friday Amit Shah.

Vasava had kept everyone guessing till the last moment, making both sides wish that he would vote in their favour. While walking out of polling booth, he told News18 that he had voted for Patel.

But the suspense was still not over in the great battle of Gujarat. Minutes after Vasava's statement, JD(U)'s national spokesperson came on TV saying Bihar CM Nitish Kumar had personally asked Vasava to vote for the BJP candidate.

Earlier, hours after Nitish Kumar had announced his decision to quit Mahagathbandhan and join NDA, Vasava had pledged his support for Patel.

Not just that, he had accompanied Patel when he had filed nomination for Rajya Sabha in Gandhinagar. "Ahmed Patel is a public figure and a politician. I see no harm in accompanying him. After all I have known Patel for a very long time," Vasava said.

But consistency doesn't seem to be his strong point. On August 4, he told News18, "I am yet to make up my mind regarding my Rajya Sabha election vote."

Interestingly, he didn't even mind admitting that he was speaking to both the sides till the last moment. "Yes, both parties are in touch with me. And what is wrong if both parties are in touch with me? I will speak to both parties and see which party offers better benefits to the tribals and adivasis of central Gujarat. I will then decide," he had said.

Vasava won the Jhagadia seat of central Gujarat on JD(U) ticket in 2007 and 2012 Gujarat Assembly polls. Before this, he had won the seat on Gujarat Adivasi Vikas Paksh ticket. He had formed the GAVP with the aim of representing adivasi and tribal rights in the Gujarat Assembly.

Vasava said that the recent alliance between the JD(U) and the BJP in Bihar had no bearing on his vote in the Rajya Sabha election. "The alliance between Nitish Kumar and the BJP in Bihar has nothing to do with the Gujarat scenario," he said.
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