Congress fields 10 candidates for RS polls

The polling and counting of votes for 59 Rajya Sabha seats will take place on 23 March

The maximum number of candidates fielded by the Congress party are in Karnataka, with 3 nominations, namely Dalit poet L. Hanumanthaiah, Vokkalinga leader G.C. Chandrasekhar and Syed Naseer Hussain. Stalwarts like former union minister Sushilkumar Shinde, Milind Deora and Rajiv Shukla were in race. On Sunday, BJP released a list with 18 names, while Congress released the list with 10 names who will be contesting for the upcoming Rajya Sabha. The Congress with its seven MLAs can not win any of the 10 seats that are up for grabs and will support the BSP. In return, Congress will support the BSP candidate from Uttar Pradesh. The Congress' support comes after BSP chief Mayawati offered a quid pro quo in Rajya Sabha elections in UP and Madhya Pradesh.

In Maharashtra, where its age-old alliance with the Shiv Sena looks to be all but over, the party has made a decision to support former chief minister Narayan Rane. It is said the state Congress unit was of the view that representation for "outsiders" could present the opposition parties with an issue to attack Congress by invoking the sentiments of "Kannadiga pride".

Elections to 58 Rajya Sabha seats in several states are slated to be held on 23 March.

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Santosh Kumar has been a close associate of the Chief Minister taking care of the latter's daily activities for the last 17 years. Based on its strength in the state assembly, the ruling BJP can send eight persons to the Upper House of Parliament, while the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the BSP can send one member each. So, the party opted to nominate Jaitley from Uttar Pradesh. Last date for filing nomination was March 12 while scrutiny of paperswould be done next day, Mr Rai said adding that willing candidates couldwithdraw their nominations by March 15.

The YSR Congress chose businessman Vemireddy Prabhakar Reddy for the lone seat it could win and he has already filed his nomination. In all, three seats from the state will fall vacant on April 2 with the retirement of incumbents K Chiranjeevi, Renuka Chowdary and T Devender Goud.

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