Odisha RS by-polls: BJP’s Ashwini Vaishnaw files nomination

Bhubaneswar: Former bureaucrat and BJP leader Ashwini Vaishnaw today filed his nomination as party’s candidate for by-polls to three Rajya Sabha seats of Odisha.

He filed his nomination papers before the concerned Returning Officer at the State Assembly here.

Moments earlier, Biju Janata Dal (BJD) candidates Amar Patnaik and Sasmit Patra had filed their nominations.

Vaishnaw, who was private secretary to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, had joined the saffron party on June 22, a day after the BJP fielded him as its nominee.

The BJD has already decided to support the candidature of Vaishnaw.

Polling will be held on July 5 between 9 am and 4 pm. Counting of votes will take place at 5 pm on the very day.

The three seats which fell vacant were held by BJD’s Achyutananda Samanta, Pratap Keshari Deb and Soumya Ranjan Patnaik. While Samanta was elected from Kandhamal Lok Sabha seat, Deb and Patnaik won from Aul and Khandapada Assembly segments in the recently held elections.

Vaishnaw has filed nomination for the vacant seat of Soumya Ranjan Patnaik.

Samanta and Patnaik’s term in the Upper House was to end in April, 2024 while Deb’s term in the Rajya Sabha was till July, 2022.

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