New Delhi: Polling for 16 seats of the Rajya Sabha has begun in four states on Friday, June 10. The elections are being held for six seats in Maharashtra, four each in Rajasthan and Karnataka, and two in Haryana.
Earlier, 41 candidates were elected unopposed from different states.
The newly elected candidates included 11 from Uttar Pradesh, six from Tamil Nadu, five from Bihar, four from Andhra Pradesh, three from Madhya Pradesh and Odisha, and two from Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Telangana and Jharkhand, along with one from Uttarakhand.
Out of these 41 seats, the ruling BJP has picked up 14 seats, including eight from Uttar Pradesh, two each from Bihar and Madhya Pradesh and, one from Jharkhand, one from Uttarakhand.
Some excitement has been added to the Rajya Sabha polls this time after the BJP, and the Shiv Sena decided to field ‘an extra candidate’ each in Maharashtra.
The surprise entry of media personalities as Independent candidates in Haryana and Rajasthan; the move by the BJP, the Congress and the JD(S) to try for the fourth seat in Karnataka, despite not having the numbers, have also made the polls interesting.
In Congress-ruled Rajasthan, the BJP has fielded only one candidate, Ghanshyam Tiwari, and is backing Independent candidate and media baron Subhash Chandra.
Congress has fielded three and would need 15 extra votes for all three of its candidates to win, while BJP would need 11 surplus votes for its two candidates.
In BJP-ruled Karnataka, the Congress has fielded Jairam Ramesh and Mansoor Ali Khan, while BJP candidates are Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, actor Jaggesh, and Karnataka MLC Lahar Singh Siroya.
Real estate stalwart D. Kupendra Reddy is the JD (S) candidate.
In Haryana, the BJP, which has 40 MLAs, has fielded former Transport Minister Krishan Lal Panwar and is backing media personality, Kartikeya Sharma.
The party is banking on the ten seats of its ally Jannayak Janata Party (JJP).
There are also seven Independents. INLD’s Abhay Chautala and Haryana Lokhit Party’s Gopal Kanda have also announced their support for Kartikeya Sharma.
In Maharashtra, the BJP nominees are Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, Anil Bonde and Dhananjay Mhadik. The Sena has fielded Sanjay Raut and Sanjay Pawar. The NCP and the Congress have fielded one candidate
each, former Union minister Praful Patel and Imran Pratapgadi, respectively.