The Janata Dal (United) on Saturday announced the first list of 15 candidates for Bihar and four other states, fielding former bureaucrat KP Ramaiah from Sasaram in Bihar against Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar.
Amid persisting worries about a likely rebellion in the JD(U), the ruling party in Bihar announced candidates for just six Lok Sabha seats in the state that are going to polls on April 10.
The party would contest 38 of 40 seats in Bihar in alliance with the CPI, which would field candidates from two seats — Begusarai and Banka.
Candidates for the other constituencies were yet to be finalised apparently due to differences between party president Sharad Yadav and chief minister Nitish Kumar.
Bihar assembly speaker Uday Narayan Choudhary and former Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Ramaiah figure in the first list of JD(U) candidates in Bihar that was released in New Delhi.
Choudhary and Ramaiah will contest from Jamui and Sasaram reserved constituencies, respectively. Lok Sabha speaker Kumar is the Congress candidate from Sasaram. The BJP has fielded Chhedi Paswan from the segment.
LJP chief Ram Vilas Paswan's son Chirag Paswan is contesting from Choudhary's seat Jamui. Sudhanshu Shekhar Bhaskar is the RJD candidate here. While the LJP has an alliance with the BJP, the RJD is in alliance with the Congress in Bihar.
The JD(U) also declared the candidature of former MLA Baagi Kumar Verma from Aurangabad, Mahabali Singh from Karakat, Jitan Ram Manjhi from Gaya and Kaushal Yadav from Nawada. Manjhi has already filed his nomination from the Gaya seat.
Except for Mahabali Singh, the JD (U) has fielded new candidates for rest of the five seats. In the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, JD(U) candidates Bhudeo Choudhary and Sushil Singh had won from Jamui and Aurangabad, respectively.
Announcing the names, party president Sharad Yadav said the candidates for the remaining 32 seats in Bihar would be declared on Sunday.
"We have almost finalised the candidates for other constituencies. The names will be declared tomorrow (Sunday)," Yadav said.
Some JD(U) leaders had on Thursday met Yadav and protested the way the party planned to give tickets to new entrants to contest the polls.
The party also fielded its Jharkhand unit chief Jaleshwar Mahato from Giridih and Mahesh Yadav from Chatra in Jharkhand. It also declared candidates for five seats in Narendra Modi-ruled Gujarat and one each in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
With PTI inputs