Bhubaneswar,Mar 14: Two candidates from ruling Biju Janata Dal and one each from BJP and Congress today filed their papers from Orissa for the March 26 Rajya Sabha elections on the first day of filing nominations today.
While former minister Mangala Kissan and former Ganjam Zilla Parishad Chairperson Renubala Pradhan filed their nominations as BJD candidates,former Rajya Sabha member and INTUC Orissa unit president Ramachandra Khuntia filed his papers as Congress candidate.
Mr Balbir Punj of the ruling alliance BJP filed his papers amidst resentment from a few party legislators here.
Congress's Ramachandra Khuntia was the first to file his paper followed by BJD's Mangala Kissan and Renubala Pradhan. Mr Punj filed his nomination at the last.
While Mr Khuntia filed three sets of paper, Mr Kissan and Ms Pradhan filed two sets each and Mr Punj one set.
Senior Congress leader and leader of Opposition J B Pattnaik and Congress deputy leader Narashingh Mishra were among others who proposed the candidature of Mr.Khuntia Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik,also BJD President, proposed the candidature of Mr.Kissan while Planning Coordination and Science Technology Minister Duryodhan Majhi proposed the nomination of Ms Pradhan.
Similarly, BJP state Legislature Party Leader Biswa Bhushan Harichandan and nine others proposed the candidature of Mr Punj. Four members of Rajya Sabha from the state would be retiring after completing their terms. They are Mr Surendra Lath of BJP,Ms Pramila Bohidar and Mrs Sushri Devi of BJD and Mr Dillip Ray (Independent).
In the 147-member Assembly the BJD has 61 members, followed by Congress(37),BJP 32, JMM(4),NCP(2), CPI and CPI-M one each and Independents(8). One seat was lying vacant following the death of Mr Anantaram Majhi of Congress last year.