BJP declares candidates for March 23 RS polls

Amitabh Bachchan with his wife Jaya Bachchan

Pradhan hailing from Odisha was elected to Rajya Sabha from the state of Bihar in 2012 and his tenure in the Upper House of the Parliament will end in April this year. Monday was the last day for filing nominations. At present, the Congress and the NCP hold two seats each, while the Sena and the BJP have one seat each.

Meanwhile, in Gujarat, the BJP fielded three candidates on its mandate to counter a possible move by the Congress. The BJP had nominated sitting Rajya Sabha MPs and Union Ministers Parshottam Rupala and Mansukh Mandaviya.

The BJP list includes former Congress leader and former Maharashtra CM Narayan Rane, Rajasthan's Kirodi Lal Meena who rejoined the BJP Sunday, and Rajeev Chandrashekhar who has been an independent MP in Rajya Sabha.

Congress is likely to support BSP's lone candidate in UP so that they are able to seal the deal for 2019.

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Vandana Chavan, outgoing member of Nationalist Congress Party and Anil Desai, outgoing member of Shiv Sena will continue their term as the respective parties have given tickets to the duo.

A source close to Valera said 10 MLAs of the Congress have signed his nomination papers.

The poll outcome, if elections need to be held, will be announced on March 23.

The 65-year-old Konkan strongman, along with Maharasthra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, had met BJP president Amit Shah in New Delhi last week.

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"Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has started calling the disgruntled among our legislators", a Congress politician said from Mumbai. Consequently, Congress has named L. Hanumanthaiah, Syed Naseer Hussain and GC Chandrashekhar.

However, state Congress President Bharatsinh Solanki said both Yagnik and Rathwa would win their seats. BJP candidate and UP general secretary Salil Bishnoi, when contacted said, "As per the orders of my party leadership, I have filed my nomination papers". "We have chose to join hands with the secular forces against the oppressive and communal politics and chose to vote for the BSP candidate", Lallu said, adding that the central leadership of the party has been apprised of the decision and they have supported it.

According to reports, Congress' decision to field its third candidate came as a blow to JDS that had hoped Congress would support its candidate, keeping the larger picture of the post poll scenario after the assembly elections in mind.

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