Union minister and Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan today filed his nomination papers for the Rajya Sabha bypoll in Bihar in presence of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
The bypoll has been necessitated after Mr Paswan's cabinet colleague and BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad gave up his seat upon his election to the Lok Sabha.
Mr Paswan, who arrived in the city from New Delhi around noon, drove straight to the state headquarters of his party before heading towards the state assembly premises.
Apart from Nitish Kumar, Union Minister of State for Home and state BJP chief Nityanand Rai accompanied Mr Paswan to the Vidhan Sabha premises where the LJP president filed his nomination.
As a huge posse of photo and video journalists jostled for space inside the chamber of the Vidhan Sabha secretary to capture the moment, the chief minister lost his cool and asked them sternly to maintain decorum. They were subsequently forced out of the room by security personnel.
Mr Paswan had not contested the just-concluded Lok Sabha polls, leaving his pocket borough Hajipur for his younger brother Pashupati Kumar Paras and the latter retained the seat for the LJP. He was re-inducted in the Narendra Modi cabinet on May 30.
Mr Prasad, who was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha for his third consecutive term last year, resigned from the Upper House upon his election to the Lok Sabha from Patna Sahib seat.
The last date for filing of nominations for the Rajya Sabha bypolls, being held in three states, is June 25 and scrutiny will take place the following day. The last date for withdrawal of nominations is June 28 while polling and counting of votes will be held on July 5.
The NDA in Bihar, comprising the BJP, JD(U) and LJP, has a comfortable majority in the state assembly and Mr Paswan's election to the Rajya Sabha is therefore being seen as a foregone conclusion. While announcing the seat-sharing arrangement in the Bihar NDA for the general elections it was said that Paswan will be sent to the Rajya Sabha from wherever the first election is held.
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