Biennial Elections to the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) on March 23

Glen Norman
February 26, 2018

On the other hand, BSP Supremo Mayawati has no chance to become a Rajya Sabha member again after her resignation previous year, or send any other leader to the Upper House till it seeks support from the Congress and Samajwadi Party.

In August 2017, the BJP overtook Congress and became the largest political party in the Rajya Sabha. It is likely to win eight out of ten Rajya Sabha seats from Uttar Pradesh, while the Samajwadi Party may get only one.

The Election Commissioned announced on Friday that it will hold biennial elections on March 23 to the Council of States, to replace the 58 Rajya Sabha members who will retire in April and May this year. The BJP hopes that it may gain the support of AIADMK 13 and BJD 8 seats in RS, and that could bring it in a position to take on the Opposition on equal footing in the House of elders. Three seats each are also vacant from Telangana, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan. Five seats each are from Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal followed by 4 seats each from Gujarat and assembly poll-bound Karnataka.

A senior Rajya Sabha member from Congress said, "In a state like Gujarat, BJP will lose a seat or two to us". It would be a key test of whether the opposition is able to field a common candidate in some seats against the BJP.

The leader, requesting anonymity, added that it was too early to discuss the issue of fielding common opposition candidates in some seats.

While the ECI will issue notification for the polls on March 5, the last date for filling nominations has been fixed for March 12.

Polling will be held in the state assembly from 9am to 4pm on March 23 and the counting of votes would begin there soon after from 5pm.

With barely a year left in the life of the current Lok Sabha, the changed Rajya Sabha numbers would have more of an impact in the first couple of years of the next Lok Sabha.

Other reports by

Discuss This Article