Rajya Sabha deputy chairman election: Boost for NDA, BJD backs Harivansh Narayan Singh’s candidature

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Updated: September 14, 2020 2:22 PM

Harivansh Narayan Singh is seeking re-election to the post of Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

NDA candidate Harivansh Narayan Singh the post of Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) of Naveen Patnaik on Monday announced its support to NDA candidate Harivansh Narayan Singh’s candidature for the post of Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha. The election is likely to take place on Monday evening when the House meets.

Patnaik announced the party’s decision to back Harivansh, days after JD(U) president and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar called the Odisha CM to seek support for his party’s candidate.

“Our party will support National Democratic Alliance’s candidate Harivansh for the post of Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman,” party’s Rajya Sabha MP Prasanna Acharya said.

The BJD has nine of the 10 Rajya Sabha members from Odisha. The remaining one seat is held by the BJP.

JD(U) MP Harivansh had on Wednesday filed nomination for the election. The post had fallen vacant after Harivansh’s term ended. He has since been re-elected to the Upper House as a member from Bihar.

The BJD has also issued a three-line whip to its MPs, asking them to be present in the House when election takes place for the post. The whip was issued by Shiv Pratap Shukla, BJP’s Chief Whip in the Rajya Sabha, who cited “very important legislative business”.

The Bharatiya Janata Party too has issued a three-line whip to all its Rajya Sabha MPs asking them to be present in the House on September 14.

The BJP has 87 MPs in the Upper House while the NDA has more than a hundred members. The government is confident that it’s candidate will sail through in the 245-member House.

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