The suspense in Gujarat was finally over with a political theater that went on well past the midnight today. Ahmed Patel, the outgoing Rajya Sabha MP from Gujarat had his candidature challenged by ex-Congress MLA Balwantsinh Rajput. With 57 MLAs this should've been a cakewalk for Mr Patel (who needed 46 votes to win), but last minute defections and Shakersinh Vaghela's rebellion made this contest interesting. If not for the disqualification of two votes by ECI, this election would've certainly gone in a run off where Patel would've likely been defeated. But as things stand, he won his seat with 44 votes. This was a unique election where Congress threw its full might behind Ahmed Patel yet almost came short and BJP with almost no chance on the 3rd seat gave Mr Patel a run for this money.
This was a curtain raiser to the Gujarat electoral battle in Dec 2017 as for the first time has BJP taken on a Gandhi loyalist so aggressively. One can safely say that the game of thrones in Gujarat is far from over.
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