RANCHI: Voting is underway for two Rajya Sabha seats in Jharkhand, where three candidates are in the fray, including ruling JMM founder and former chief minister Shibu Soren.
Congress leader Shahzada Anwar and BJP state chief Deepak Prakash are the two other candidates.
Polling began at 9 am and will continue till 4 pm, amid elaborate safety arrangements in place in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, assembly officials said.
Seventy-nine MLAs in the 82-member House are eligible for casting their votes.
While the only nominated MLA has no right to vote in the Rajya Sabha elections, two assembly seats fell vacant after Chief Minister Hemant Soren gave up Dumka, while retaining Barhait, following state polls, and senior Congress MLA Rajendra Prasad Singh died last month, leaving Bermo constituency without a representative.
The polling for the two Rajya Sabha seats in Jharkhand was necessitated as the tenure of Independent member Parimal Nathwani and RJD's Prem Chand Gupta had ended in April.
All three candidates had filed their nomination papers in March after the Election Commission issued notification for the Upper House seats.
The election was scheduled to be held on March 26 but was postponed due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown.