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Sonia Gandhi files nomination for Rajya Sabha elections from Rajasthan

Jaipur (Rajasthan): Congress Parliamentary Party Chairperson Sonia Gandhi filed her nomination for the Rajya Sabha election from Rajasthan on Wednesday.

Party MP Rahul Gandhi, party's general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, former Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and state party president Govind Singh Dotasra were also present.

Sonia Gandhi, who is chairperson of the Congress Parliamentary Party, was Congress president for almost 22 years between 1998 and 2022 and is a five-time Lok Sabha MP from Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh.

The move to file nominations for Rajya Sabha comes ahead of Lok Sabha polls expected to be held in April-May this year.

There are 10 Rajya Sabha seats in Rajasthan. In the upcoming biennial elections three seats in the State are up for grabs. The ruling BJP is set to get two of the seats, while the Opposition Congress will get one, on the basis of their respective strengths in the State Assembly.

The two BJP candidates are BJP State vice-president and former Minister Chunnilal Garasiya, and former Sumerpur MLA Madan Rathore.

The BJP has 115 and the Congress 70 MLAs in the 200-member State Assembly. A minimum of 67 votes will be required to win one Rajya Sabha seat in the event of a contest.

Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who was last elected to Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan, is retiring in April this year. The term of Environment Minister Bhupendra Yadav will come to an end this April. Besides one Rajya Sabha seat in the State has become vacant after the resignation of the BJP's Kirodi Lal Meena.

The Congress party announced on Wednesday the first list of candidates for the upcoming Rajya Sabha Biennial Elections to be held in various states.

According to an official release from the All India Congress Committee (AICC), "Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge has approved the candidature of Sonia Gandhi from Rajasthan and Dr. Akhilesh Prasad Singh from Bihar. Additionally, Abhishek Manu Singhvi has been fielded from Himachal Pradesh and Chandrakant Handore from Maharashtra."

The last day for filing nomination papers is February 15. The term for Rajya Sabha MPs is six years and elections are held after every two years for 33 per cent of the seats.

Currently, the Rajya Sabha has a strength of 245 members.

Out of the total 245 members, out of which 233 are representatives of the States and Union territories of Delhi, Puducherry and Jammu and Kashmir (w.e.f. 31.10. 2019) and 12 are nominated by the President. 12 are directly nominated by the President who are veterans in the field of art, literature, sports, science etc.

Based on population, each state is allocated a certain number of candidates in the Upper House.

Members of the state legislative assemblies choose Rajya Sabha members through an indirect election system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote (SVT) 

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