Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot threw his hat into the ring from Madhya Pradesh. Elections to the six Rajya Sabha seats from Maharashtra will be held on March 23. The JD (U) has in Bihar has nominated Mahendra Prasad Singh and Bashistha Narain Singh.
A prominent omission from the BJP list is that of Vinay Katiyar whose term is due to expire now.
"An independent Mahesh Chandra Sharma also filed his nomination papers", Saxena, special secretary, UP Assembly, said.
A contest looks certain in Uttar Pradesh with 14 candidates filing their nominations for the 10 seats.
The BJP has 28 extra votes and needs 37 to get its ninth candidate cruise through.
There was speculation that the BJP may ask some of its leaders to withdraw from the contest.
Narayan Rane files nomination for Rajya Sabha
Amid high drama, Rathwa finally managed to file his nomination in the last hour. "We don't want to give it up without any fight", a Congress leader said.
The list of 18 BJP candidates was released by the Bharatiya Janata Party Central Election Committee for ensuing biennial elections to the council of states.
In the 230-member MP Assembly, the BJP's strength is 165, the Congress has 57 legislators, the BSP has four, while there are three Independents and one nominated member, an Assembly official said. He was elected to the Rajya Sabha in June 2009 and was against re-elected in 2010. A candidate can score a straight win with 38 votes.
Senior journalist Kumar Ketkar is the Congress candidate from Maharashtra. Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar had filed his papers earlier.
The polls are unlikely to be unopposed after the BJP fielded Maharashtra State Commission for Women chairperson Vijaya Rahatkar, taking the number in the fray to seven. Former Maharashtra Congress leader Narayan Rane and the BJP's Kerala face V Muralidharan are the the BJP candidates from Maharashtra. Going by this statistic, if MLAs of both the parties vote as per their party whip, both Congress and BJP are poised to win two seats each.
Saroj Pandey, who had lost the Lok Sabha polls in 2014, has been fielded from Chhattisgarh, Madan Lal Saini from Rajasthan, Lt Gen D P Vats (retd) from Haryana, Kailash Soni and Ajay Pratap Singh from Madhya Pradesh, Chandrasekhar from Karnataka and Sameer Oraon from Jharkhand, the BJP statement read. Four posts are likely to go the NDA while the Congress and the RJS are likely to get one seat each.
G.C. Chandrashekar is presently the General Secretary of the KPCC.