Janata Dal, United, president and Union Defence Minister George Fernandes has reverted to his former constituency of Muzaffarpur in Bihar amidst speculation that his party colleague and Union Railways Minister Nitish Kumar will be nominated from Nalanda, also in Bihar, which Fernandes represented in the outgoing Lok Sabha.
Two other senior JD-U politicians, Union ministers Sharad Yadav and Digvijay Singh, are, however, seeking re-election from Madhepura and Banka. Both these constituencies are also in Bihar.
Releasing its first list of candidates, the JD-U named candidates for 19 of the 24 seats in Bihar allotted to it under a seat-sharing arrangement with the Bharatiya Janata Party.
The party also declared that it would contest the elections in Jharkhand even though the BJP has already named candidates for all 14 seats at stake in the state.
Pointing out that Muzaffarpur had overwhelmingly elected Fernandes in 1977 when he was still in jail, JD-U spokesman Shiv Kumar told reporters in New Delhi that a decision on Nitish Kumar's constituency would be taken soon. But he refused to say if the railway minister would move to Nalanda from Barh, from where he won with a narrow margin in 1999.