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24 of BJP's outgoing RS members don't get renominated

February 14, 2024 19:14 IST

Many senior BJP leaders and outgoing Rajya Sabha MPs, including seven Union ministers such as Dharmendra Pradhan and Bhupender Yadav, have not been renominated by the party for the biennial Rajya Sabha polls amid strong indications that several of them may contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

IMAGE: BJP leader Sudhanshu Trivedi files his nomination for Rajya Sabha elections in Lucknow, accompanied by Uttar Pradesh as Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Deputy CM Brajesh Pathak, minister Swatantra Dev Singh and party incharge for UP Baijayant Jay Panda, February 14, 2024. Photograph: ANI/X

With the ruling party naming 28 candidates for the elections to 56 seats, their profiles underscore the BJP's determination to recognise its grassroots organisation workers, who might not be much known in outside political circles, while factoring in social equations as well.

Three of the new names -- Dharmshila Gupta of Bihar, Medha Kulkarni of Maharashtra and Maya Naroliya of Madhya Pradesh -- are associated with the party's 'Mahila Morcha' (women's wing), an ode to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's repeated emphasis about the higher approval the BJP enjoys among women voters.


Among the 28 outgoing MPs, the BJP has renominated only four -- its president J P Nadda, two Union ministers and an articulate national spokesperson in Sudhanshu Trivedi - sending a strong signal that its Rajya Sabha members cannot take their high-profile perch for granted and are expected to use the platform to connect with the masses and cultivate constituencies of their own.

Ashwini Vaishnaw and L Murugan are the ministers who have been renominated.

No outgoing Rajya Sabha member of the BJP who has served two or more terms has been repeated except Nadda, who is set for a third term.

Notably, none of the party's national office-bearers figures among the 28 soon-to-be Rajya Sabha MPs, even though many of their lower-profile state organisation leaders have made the cut.

"I will call it decentralisation and democratisation of the selection process. The visibility that comes with moving around in political circles in Delhi or comments to the media makes no difference to the current national leadership," a senior party leader said.

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Mansukh Mandaviya, Parshottam Rupala, Narayan Rane and V Muraleedharan are five other ministers whose term is ending in the Upper House and who have not been renominated by the BJP.

Other senior leaders who have not been repeated are the party's chief spokesperson and its media head Anil Baluni, former Union minister Prakash Javadekar and former Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi.

Several of them are being talked about within the party's circles as probable candidates for the Lok Sabha elections expected to be held in April-May.

The biennial elections to fill 56 seats of Rajya Sabha will be held on February 27. The last date for filing of nominations is February 15.

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