Vote according to conscience, Kejriwal to MLAs amid cross voting buzz

Sixty-seven of 69 Delhi MLAs today exercised their franchise in the presidential poll, amid an appeal by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to the legislators to vote according to their "conscience".Two AAP MLAs - Saurabh Bhardwaj and Devendra Sehrawat - did not turn up. An AAP functionary said Bhardwaj is abroad, while Sehrawat, a rebel MLA, said he chose not to vote to highlight AAPs "bias" against his constituency.The 70-member Delhi assembly currently has 69 MLAs, of which, 64 belong to the ruling AAP and four to the BJP.One seat is lying vacant since March when AAP legislator Ved Prakash had quit membership to join the BJP."Out of 69 MLAs, 67 cast their votes in the presidential poll," Chief Electoral Officer Chandra Bhushan Kumar said.As voting progressed, speculation was rife about alleged "cross-voting" by a few AAP MLAs.

BJP MLA Om Prakash Sharma claimed that at least "10-12 AAP MLAs" had voted for NDA candidate Ram Nath Kovind.The AAP has officially thrown its weight behind joint opposition candidate Meira Kumar, who had met Kejriwal yesterday."We are supporting Meira Kumar. All should vote following their conscience. In a democracy, whoever gets more votes wins," Kejriwal told reporters after casting his vote.As voting gathered steam with city legislators arriving at the assembly, among the first to vote were Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, sacked AAP minister K...

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