Chandigarh/ New Delhi: Senior Congress leader and former Union minister Ambika Soni and Akali Dal leader Balwinder Singh Bhunder were elected unopposed to the Rajya Sabha from Punjab on Friday, officials said here. The Rajya Sabha term of both leaders was to end on July 4 this year. Soni was felicitated by senior Punjab Congress leaders, including leader of opposition Charanjit Singh Channi, following her re-election.
Union Ministers Piyush Goyal and Suresh Prabhu, senior Congress leaders P Chidambaram, JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav and all six nominees of AIADMK and DMK in Tamil Nadu were also elected unopposed to Rajya Sabha on expiry of deadline for withdrawal of nominations. As none of the six candidates for as many RS seats in Maharashtra pulled out, all were elected to the Upper House including Chidambaram, Goyal, former union minister Praful Patel (NCP), BJP’s Vinay Sahasrabuddhe and Vikas Mahatme and Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut.
Sharad Yadav of ruling JD(U), noted Supreme Court lawyer Ram Jethmalani backed by ruling RJD and RJD chief Lalu Prasad’s daughter Misa Bharti were among five candidates declared elected unopposed for Rajya Sabha in Bihar. Returning Officer and Principal Secretary (Assembly) Pradeep Kumar Dubey said none of the 12 candidates for Rajya Sabha withdrew their papers. Sibal is expecting help from BSP that had recently backed Congress in Uttarakhand Assembly floor test to defeat “communal forces”.
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