Bhubaneswar: After scrutiny nomination papers of all the three BJD Rajya Sabha candidates found to be valid while nomination of independent candidate Subash Mohapatra was rejected.
BJD leaders Prashant Nanda, Soumya Ranjan Patnaik and Achyuta Samanta submitted two sets of papers to the Returning Officer in the presence of Chief Minister and party president Naveen Patnaik and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Bikram Keshari Arukha on March 7 before Returning Officer Rajesh Prabhakar Patil.
With more than two-third majority (118 members in a house of 147), the BJD is comfortably placed to elect all three members to the Upper House.
As one candidate requires at least 37 first preference votes to get elected to the Upper House. The Congress has only 15 legislators followed by BJP’s 10.
The last date for filing nomination papers for the polls was March 12. While nomination papers was scrutinised on March 13, the last date for withdrawal of candidature is March 15.
The polling and counting will be held between 9 am and 4 pm on March 23.
The term of BJD MPs-AU Singhdeo, Dilip Tirkey and party-supported member AV Swami will come to an end on April 3, 2018. While two of the MPs are from the BJD, Swami is an independent supported by the ruling party.
The three seats will fall vacant as the tenure of AU Singhdeo, Dilip Tirkey and AV Swami (Independent) is ending on April 2.

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