The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is likely to discuss the name of its candidate for the lone Rajya Sabha seat, election for which is slated for March 26, in a meeting on Thursday.
Announcing the date for the election, chief election officer C Paulrasu said, “Notification for the election will be issued on March 6. The last date of filing nominations will be March 13. Scrutiny of nomination will be done on March 16 and the nomination can be taken back by March 18. Polling will be held on March 26 from 9am to 4pm. The votes will be counted at 5 pm on the same day.”
The meeting will be presided over by BJP national president JP Nadda, who is visiting his home state for the first time after being appointed as the party national president.
The Rajya Sabha seat will fall vacant as sitting Congress MP Viplove Thakur completes her term in April.
Many BJP leaders are vying for the RS berth. As BJP is in the majority in the state assembly, it is certain that a candidate from the saffron part will be elected.
More than half a dozen leaders are in the race for Rajya Sabha berth. Two-term chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal is one of the front-runners for the job. Name of former state Mahila Morcha president Indu Goswami and RSS functionary Mahinder Nath Pandey is also doing rounds. Pandey and chief minister Jai Ram Thakur were contemporaries in the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and the former has also served as organising secretary of Himachal BJP. He also shares cordial relations with Nadda. Whereas Dhumal’s experience as Lok Sabha MP and former chief minister may go in his favour. Women leader Indu Goswami reportedly has direct links in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).