BJP names candidates for eight Rajya Sabha seats

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Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has been shifted to Madhya Pradesh from Bihar.

Earlier, rumours were doing rounds on national media that the BJP central leadership may consider fielding Pradhan or Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley from Maharashtra.

Except for this two, the BJP central election committee chose to field five serving ministers and a party general secretary from the states which they are representing now. The other candidate from Madhya Pradesh is social justice minister Thawar Chand Gehlot.

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He has been nominated for the March 23 election from Uttar Pradesh instead.

Eight Ministers of the Modi Cabinet are retiring from the Rajya Sabha.

The other two Union ministers, Parshottam Rupala and Manusukh Mandaviya, will contest from Gujarat. One is from the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), another, Pramod Tiwari, is from the Congress, Vinay Katiyar is from the BJP and one more seat is to be contested because BSP supremo Mayawati resigned from the Upper House a year ago. He also has been the chairman of a number of parliamentary committees set up to study different bills. As soon as the House met for the day, members from various parties, including TDP, Shiv Sena, TRS, YSR Congress, AIADMK and TMC started raising slogans on their respective issues, following which Speaker Sumitra Mahajan adjourned the proceedings for an hour.

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In the current round, 58 seats had fallen vacant which will be filled. Out of these seats, four are in Gujarat which are presently held by the BJP. The last date for filing nominations is March 12.

Senior Congress leaders are likely to insist on fielding former Knowledge Commission chairman, Sam Pitroda or party veteran Janardhan Diwedi from Karnataka for one of the three seats from the state which the party is aiming to win in the forthcoming Rajya Sabha polls on March 23.

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