Arun Jaitley files nomination for RS poll


The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has fielded three candidates, including two sitting Rajya Sabha members. On Wednesday, the BJP had renominated to the Rajya Sabha all eight Union Ministers, including Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar, apart from its General Secretary and key strategist Bhupender Yadav from Rajasthan.

In the 230-member Madhya Pradesh Assembly, the BJP's strength is 165, the Congress has 57 legislators, the BSP has four, while there are three Independents and one nominated member, an Assembly official said.

The Congress has named Babu Prasad as the UDF opposition candidate from Kerala. It also expects support of MLAs from smaller parties- B R Patil (KJP), B Nagendra (independent) and Ashok Kheny (KMP), who have recently joined the Congress.

Monday was the last day for filing nominations, which can be withdrawn by March 15.

The BJP will field Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Union Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot from Madhya Pradesh for another Rajya Sabha term.

Altogether seven candidates are in the fray from the state where polling will be held for four seats.

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Three seats are now vacant in the 243-member.Bihar assembly. It is worth mentioning here that Election Commission of India had announced the programme for the Biennial Elections to the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) to fill the seats of members retiring in April-May 2018. Two other BJP leaders Ajay Pratap Singh and Kailash Soni also submitted the nomination forms. It is already learnt to have won over four independents in the state assembly leaving it with just a few more votes needed for its 9th candidate.

K. Valera, a former bureaucrat, who threw his hat in the ring at the last minute due to technical hitches with Rathwa's candidature.

The maximum number of candidates fielded by the Congress party are in Karnataka, with 3 nominations, namely Dalit poet L. Hanumanthaiah, Vokkalinga leader G.C. Chandrasekhar and Syed Naseer Hussain.

However, the Congress party requires at least 40 MLAs to win the Rajya Sabha seat.

Former Union minister Akhilesh Prasad Singh, the Congress candidate, was the next to file nomination.