UP: BJP to back Independent candidate, contest for 10th seat thrown open

UP: BJP to back Independent candidate, contest for 10th seat thrown open

Nomination process for electing five Rajya Sabha members from Madhya Pradesh commenced on March 5 with the issuance of notification by the Election Commission of India (ECI).

Ahead of the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections, the BJP has added an element of unpredictability to the otherwise boring and predictable polls by fielding a fourth candidate from the state.

Ajay Pratap Singh and Kailash Soni will contest from Madhya Pradesh while Narayana Rane and V Muralidharan will represent Maharashtra.

The BJP has fielded Ghaziabad-based businessman Anil Agarwal and two others in the March 23 elections. The party's choices for the Rajya Sabha indicate an effort on its part to strengthen its social equations in the states going to the polls this year and also to bolster its position in Andhra Pradesh where it has been traditionally weak.

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In terms of caste equation, the party has made a decision to field Naseer Hussain, a minority community leader from Ballari, L. Hanumanthaiah, a dalit from Bengaluru Rural and G.C. Chandrashekar a Vokkaliga from Hassan. BM Farooq filed nomination as a JDS candidate.

Besides Union Minister of State Parshottam Rupala and Mansukh Mandavia, the ruling BJP has fielded senior leader Kiritsinh Rana, stating there could be cross-voting due to Valera's nomination as a third candidate backed by the Congress.

Kaushik while clarifying on the goof-up of purchasing nomination form, said being the State President, it is his responsibility to make preparations for the candidate on behalf of the party.

The Congress today cleared two more names for the Rajya Sabha election and nominated Akhilesh Prasad Singh from Bihar and Lekhram Sahu from Chhattisgarh.

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However, arithmetic favours the Congress that apparently has support from seven rebel JDS MLAs, who are expected to join the party after the Rajya Sabha polls.

His name was proposed by 40 MLAs - 20 each from the Congress and the TMC. While the JD (S) is short by 15 votes, the Congress too is short of some votes for the third MP. They include Union ministers Prakash Javadekar, L Ganeshan, Thawarchand Gehlot and Meghraj Jain from BJP and Satyavrat Chaturvedi from Congress.

For the two seats in Gujarat, supporters of state Congress president Bharatsinh Solanki and Shaktisinh Gohil were lobbying hard. The Congress is not contesting the elections from the state.

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