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Rajya Sabha to Witness Fight for Deputy Chair's Post as Congress Open to Supporting Opposition Candidate

Though the BJP is the single largest party in Rajya Sabha, the exit of the TDP has put the NDA in a tough spot.

Pallavi Ghosh | CNN-News18_pallavighosh

Updated:June 27, 2018, 3:31 PM IST
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Rajya Sabha to Witness Fight for Deputy Chair's Post as Congress Open to Supporting Opposition Candidate
File photo of proceedings in the Rajya Sabha.
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New Delhi: The Monsoon session of the Parliament begins on July 18, but it promises to be a heated one for many reasons.

The first big fight is to be over the deputy chairperson’s post which goes vacant on July 2.

Sources say, that vice president and chairperson of Rajya Sabha Venkaiah Naidu has begun the process after his meeting with parliamentary affairs minister Ananth Kumar.

The elections are to take place in the second week of the session.

But this fight for a post which holds more decorative than actual value has suddenly become valuable for both the BJP and the opposition.

Though the BJP is the single largest party in Rajya Sabha, the exit of the TDP has put the NDA in a tough spot.

In this the key is TDP and TRS who together account for 15 key swing votes. But then who becomes the candidate is crucial. So far the consensus candidate has not even been discussed. The meeting of key opposition parties is likely to take place only after the farewell to the outgoing deputy chairperson PJ Kurien.

Kurien was from the Congress but now sources say that Congress is open to the idea of a non-Congress candidate.

After facing flak from some opposition parties for not supporting them against the fight for Kejriwal, Congress now wants to reach out. So it’s unlikely to push for its own candidate.

For now there are two front runners, though the list is yet to be decided. They are BJD's Prasanna Acharya and Sukhendu Shekhar Roy from the TMC.

Sources say, that BJD may opt out as they don’t want to get caught in the fight between the opposition and the government. They have so far maintained a safe distance from both.

The TMC and the SP are reaching out to TRS and BJD as both insist that they may be open to support opposition candidate as long as it’s not from the Congress, say sources.

The government is to appoint four new nominated members during this session and before polls. This could swing the battle in their favour.
| Edited by: Ashutosh Tripathi
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