The Elections Commission on Saturday said that the bye-elections will be held on six vacant seats of Rajya Sabha on July 5 this year. It is to be noted that all the six members of Rajya Sabha were elected as MP in the Lok Sabha elections 2019.
According to the Election Commission, voting for the elections will take place on July 5. Votes will be counted on the same day. The six seats which will go into the bye-elections are from Bihar, Odisha and Gujarat.
In its official press release, the EC cited regulations, procedure and Supreme Court judgements to say that separate notifications would be issued for each vacancy and elections would be conducted separately.
The bye-election is particularly significant for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), whose two important leaders, Amit Shah and Smriti Irani, have been elected into the Lok Sabha. Both Amit Shah and Smriti Irani were representatives from Gujarat in the Upper House.
In Gujarat, BJP president Amit Shah and Union Minister Smriti Irani’s seat is vacant. Amit Shah became the Rajya Sabha member in the year 2017, making his parliamentary debut. In Lok Sabha elections 2019, Amit Shah defeated Congress' C J Chavda from the Gandhinagar constituency.
On the other hand, Smriti Irani defeated Congress president Rahul Gandhi from Uttar Pradesh’s Amethi constituency in Lok Sabha elections 2019 by a margin of 55,120 votes. The TV actor-turned-politician had twice fought the Lok Sabha election unsuccessfully in 2004, losing to Congress leader Kapil Sibal in Chandni Chowk constituency and in 2014 suffered defeat at the hands of Rahul Gandhi in Amethi. However, in August 2011, she was sworn in as a member of parliament from Gujarat to the Rajya Sabha.
In Bihar, BJP leader and Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad’s seat is vacant. He defeated Shatrughan Sinha from the Patna Sahib constituency by over 2.84 lakh votes in the Lok Sabha elections 2019. He was elected as Rajya Sabha member in the year 2000, 2006 and in 2012. Ravi Shankar Prasad currently holds a Ministry of Law and Justice, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and Ministry of Communication in PM Modi-led central government.
The three seats which are vacant in Odisha are of Achyutananda Samanta, Pratap Keshari Deb and Soumya Ranjan Patnaik.