Congress on Friday announced the candidature of Union Minister Ambika Soni from Punjab and its General Secretary Mohsina Kidwai from Chhattisgarh for the biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha but there was no no word yet on another Union Minister Anand Sharma. The party also nominated former Union Minister and in charge of the Central Election Committee of the party Oscar Fernandes from Karnataka.
Sharma, who hails from Himachal Pradesh and whose term in the Rajya Sabha has already come to an end , may be nominated from either Rajasthan or Madhya Pradesh, party sources said. A final decision is likely any time, they said. He should get elected to retain his place in the Union Cabinet.
Four other candidates renominated included Vijay Darda from Maharashtra, Dheeraj Prasad Sahu from Jharkhand and EMS Natchiappan from Tamil Nadu, an AICC statement said.
AICC secretary Avinash Pandey, who had unsuccessfully fought the Rajya Sabha elections from Maharashtra about two years back against industrialist Rahul Bajaj, is the second candidate from Maharashtra. At that time, Bajaj, who contested as an independent candidate, was backed by NCP, Shiv Sena and BJP.
Yesterday, the party had announced the renomination of Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh and other three sitting Rajya Sabha MPs -- J D Seelam, V Hanumantha Rao and Nedurumalli Janardhana Reddy -- from Andhra Pradesh.
Elections are being held for 55 Upper House seats. While voting for 49 seats from 12 states will take place on June 17, polling for six seats from Andhra Pradesh will be held on June 14. Elections are being held for the 55 Rajya Sabha seats. While voting for 49 seats of 12 states will take place on June 17, polling for six seats from Andhra Pradesh will be held on June 14.
Election will also be held for the remaining term of a seat from Rajasthan which fell vacant due to the death of Krishan Lal Balmiki. His term was up to April 3, 2012.
The elections will be held for 11 seats in Uttar Pradesh, six each in Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu, five in Bihar, four each in Karnataka and Rajasthan, three each in Orissa and Madhya Pradesh, two each in Chhattisgarh, Punjab and Jharkhand and one in Uttarakhand.
Among the prominent retiring members are Arun Shourie, Venkaiah Naidu and Anil Dave (all BJP), Oscar Fernandes, B K Hariprasad, Mohsina Kidwai, EMS Natchiappan (all Congress), Anbumani Ramadoss (PMK), Jaya Bachchan (SP), Rahul Bajaj (Ind), George Fernandes (JD-U), Sanjay Raut (Shiv Sena), Pyarimohan Mahapatra (BJD), S C Mishra (BSP), Tariq Anwar (NCP). PTI