NDA, opposition seek BJD’s support for RS deputy chairperson poll

Bhubaneswar: The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Tuesday said both the NDA and the Opposition have sought its support for their candidates to the post of the Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairperson. The election is slated for Thursday.

BJP president Amit Shah, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) president Nitish Kumar on Tuesday spoke with Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik separately.

They sought BJD’s support for NDA’s nominee and JD(U) leader Harivansh Narayan Singh for the deputy chairperson’s post.

“JD-U president and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar spoke to Naveen Patnaik and requested his support for the JD-U candidate. In the 2012 Presidential election, though, the BJD had requested JD-U to support P.A. Sangma, but they did not,” said BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra.

However, the BJD will make a final announcement on Wednesday as per the decision of party president Naveen Patnaik, he said.

He also said that BJP President Amit Shah, Union Minister Rajnath Singh and NCP leader Sharad Pawar had spoken to Naveen Patnaik.

NCP’s Vandana Chavan is the Opposition candidate for the post.

Since no party has the required strength, BJD’s nine MPs in the Rajya Sabha is significant for the NDA or the opposition parties.

“The BJD now plays a pivotal role at the national level. It is noteworthy as to how a regional party can assume significance at the national-level politics,” said Patra. (IANS)

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