The Bharatiya Janata Party on Saturday nominated Union Ministers Sarbananda Sonowal and L Murugan for the Rajya Sabha bye-elections for the Assam and Madhya Pradesh seats.

The Assam seat had been vacated after Assembly speaker Biswajit Daimary resigned as a member in November 2020.

The Madhya Pradesh seat fell vacant after Bharatiya Janata Party leader and former Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawar Chand Gehlot was appointed the governor of Karnataka in July.

In July, Sonowal was appointed as the Union minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways and as the minister for Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, Sowa-Rigpa and Homoeopathy by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He has also served as the chief minister of Assam between 2016 and 2021.

Murugan is currently serving as the Minister of State in the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying and the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. He was the president of the Bharatiya Janata Party between March 2020 and July.

Murugan thanked the BJP leadership for the “ blessed opportunity to serve the people”.

Meanwhile, the Trinamool Congress on Tuesday nominated Sushmita Dev as its candidate for a bye-poll to the Rajya Sabha for the West Bengal seat. The former Lok Sabha MP had joined the Trinamool Congress on August 16 after quitting the Congress.

The Rajya Sabha seat from West Bengal that Dev would be contesting fell vacant after Trinamool Congress leader Manas Bhunia quit the Upper House. Bhunia resigned as an MP after winning the Sabang seat in the Assembly elections in West Bengal conducted earlier this year.

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam on Tuesday announced Kanimozhi NVN Somu and KRN Rajeshkumar as its candidates for the two vacant Rajya Sabha seats from Tamil Nadu.

The two seats fell vacant as All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam MPs KP Munusamy and R Vaithilingam quit after being elected as MLAs to the Tamil Nadu Assembly.

Bye-polls to seven vacant Rajya Sabha seats will be held on October 4, the Election Commission had announced on September 9. Among the empty seats are two from Tamil Nadu and one each from West Bengal, Assam, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Puducherry.