Actor-turned-politician K. Chiranjeevi and AICC spokesperson Renuka Chowdary were among the six candidates, including two of the Telugu Desam, who filed their nomination papers for election to as many seats in the Rajya Sabha here on Monday.
Former Home Minister T. Devender Goud, businessman C.M. Ramesh, (TDP), former Minister Palvai Govardhan Reddy and APCC general secretary Rapolu Anand Bhaskar, (Congress) were the other four nominees.
Barring Ms. Renuka Chowdary, who was member of the Rajya Sabha twice earlier, the remaining four will be making their debut in the Upper House.
Their election to the Upper House is a mere formality once their papers are found in order during scrutiny on Tuesday. Given the party-wise composition of the Assembly as also the 24 vacancies in the House, only the Congress and the TDP were in position get their candidates elected comfortably in the event of voting. As a result, no other party even gave serious thought to fielding its candidates.
Four out of these six candidates hail from Telangana, with Mr. Chiranjeevi and Mr. Ramesh being the exceptions. Both the Telugu Desam candidates are financially sound possessing assets running into tens of crores. The Congress did not lag behind too far with Mr. Chiranjeevi (Rs. 82.69 crore) and Ms. Renuka Chowdary (Rs. 57.33 crore) declaring large assets though the other candidates P. Govardhan Reddy (Rs. 2.34 crore) and Anand Bhaskar (Rs. 7.70 lakh) paled in comparison.The Congress candidates received the ‘B' form from the PCC chief Botcha Satyanarayana in Gandhi Bhavan before calling on Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy in his chambers in the Assembly premises. Accompanied by the two leaders and several Ministers, they handed over their nomination papers to the Secretary, Legislature, S. Rajasadaram, who is the Returning Officer. The Congress party's ally, MIM, also signed the nomination forms as proposers.
Telugu Desam candidates, Ramesh and T. Devender Goud filed two sets of nominations at 11.11 am, regarded by them as auspicious. They were accompanied by several party leaders and MLAs, some of whom signed their papers as proposers.
Leader of the Opposition, N. Chandrababu Naidu maintained the tradition of not accompanying the nominees to the Legislature Secretariat where they filed the papers.
After submitting the papers, Mr. Goud and Mr. Ramesh told reporters that they would work for the interests of the State as Members of the Rajya Sabha and highlight the problems faced by the State. They thanked Mr. Naidu for reposing faith in them and selecting them to represent the party in the Upper House.
Mr. Goud said he would dedicate his post for the betterment of Backward Classes and the downtrodden. Mr. Ramesh said he was fortunate to be chosen for Rajya Sabha and that a great responsibility had been kept on his shoulders.