Lucknow, Feb 13 (IANS) Samajwadi Party (SP) candidates Jaya Bachchan, Ramji Lal Suman, and Alok Ranjan, on Tuesday, filed their nomination papers for the Rajya Sabha elections.
SP President Akhilesh Yadav and senior leader Shivpal Yadav were present during the filing of nomination papers.
Earlier, Samajwadi Party leaders including party chief Akhilesh Yadav prayed at a ‘Shaligram Shila’ from which a ‘shivling’ will be carved and installed in a temple at Etawah.
The worship of the ‘Shaligram Shila’ was done in the presence of party leaders such as Akhilesh Yadav’s wife Dimple Yadav (MP), Rajya Sabha candidate Jaya Bachchan, state president Naresh Uttam Patel, former UP Assembly Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey and chief whip in the assembly Manoj Pandey.
At the SP headquarters, while Dimple Yadav broke the coconut, Akhilesh Yadav and other leaders offered prayers according to rituals.
Meanwhile, SP has the numbers to send three members to the Rajya Sabha.
The Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday announced the names of the seven candidates for the Rajya Sabha elections.
Ten Rajya Sabha seats from UP are falling vacant on April 2 when nine BJP members and one SP member will retire.
The last date for the filing of the nomination for the polls is February 15. Polling, if required, will be held on February 27 and the results will be announced on the same day.
An election will be held for these seats if any party names any more candidates over the 10 already announced by the BJP and SP.
A candidate would need 37 first preference votes to secure a seat in the Rajya Sabha and thus the SP would comfortably be able to send three members to the Rajya Sabha.
Jaya Bachchan, 75, is a four-time Samajwadi Party Rajya Sabha member and will be the second SP leader to get a fifth term, the first being Prof Ram Gopal Yadav who is currently serving his fifth term.
Alok Ranjan, 67, is a retired Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer who served as Uttar Pradesh’s chief secretary between 2014 and 2016 when Akhilesh Yadav was the UP chief minister.
An alumnus of Stephen’s College, Delhi, the retired bureaucrat also did his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad. He has been associated with the Samajwadi Party since 2017 and is part of the party’s think tank.
Ramji Lal Suman, 73, is a prominent Dalit leader and a four-time Lok Sabha member from Firozabad.
Suman, who also unsuccessfully contested the Lok Sabha elections from Hathras seat in 2014 and 2019, has been a close associate of SP founder, late Mulayam Singh Yadav since their days in the Janata Dal.
He is considered a prominent Dalit leader and wields influence in parts of western UP.
His nomination to Rajya Sabha is aimed at making up for the loss of an ally – the Rashtriya Lok Dal – that has crossed over to the NDA.