Jaipur: Former prime minister Manmohan Singh was elected unopposed to the Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan on Monday. He was declared elected unopposed as the deadline for the withdrawal of nominations for the bypoll ended at 3 pm.
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot congratulated Singh on his election to the Upper House of Parliament.”Congratulate former PM Dr #ManmohanSingh Ji on being elected unopposed as a member of #RajyaSabha from #Rajasthan. Dr Singh’s election is a matter of pride for the entire state. His vast knowledge and rich experience would benefit the people of Rajasthan a lot,” Gehlot tweeted.
Returning Officer and Assembly Secretary Pramil Kumar Mathur made the announcement. The government’s chief whip, Mahesh Joshi, received the election certificate on behalf of Singh.
The former prime minister was nominated by the Congress while the BJP did not field any candidate for the bypoll, necessitated due to the death of Rajya Sabha MP Madan Lal Saini. The former prime minister had filed the nomination papers on 13 August. Singh was a member of the Upper House of Parliament from Assam for almost three decades. He was a Rajya Sabha member for five consecutive terms from 1991 to 2019 and the country’s prime minister for two consecutive terms between 2004 and 2014.
His tenure in the Rajya Sabha ended on 14 June this year and he could not be renominated as the Congress party did not have the strength to send him to the Upper House from Assam again and there was no other vacancy left.
The Congress could not succeed in getting Manmohan Singh re-elected from Assam. It has only 25 MLAs in the State Assembly as against the 43 first-preference votes needed. The Congress has fallen short of five MLAs although 13 legislators of the All India United Democratic Front supported it. The grand old party cannot send Singh from other states either where Rajya Sabha seats are vacant. BJP’s Kamakhya Prasad Tasa and the AGP’s Birender Prasad Baishya got elected unopposed from Assam. A total of nine seats are lying vacant: Odisha (4), Tamil Nadu (1), Bihar (2) and Gujarat (2). Rajasthan has 10 Rajya Sabha seats. Remaining nine seats of Rajya Sabha from the state are with the BJP.