Veteran journalist MJ Akbar will be the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) candidate for a election to a Rajya Sabha seat in Jharkhand on July 2.
"BJP president Amit Shah has decided that MJ Akbar will be the party's candidate for the Jharkhand Rajya Sabha bypoll," a BJP statement said.
The BJP took time before announcing its candidate, fuelling speculation that it was a toss between party spokesman Shahnawaz Hussain and former chief minister Arjun Munda.
Munda even said on Sunday morning he would contest if the BJP decided so.
Akbar is expected to have no problems in entering the upper house as numbers favour the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance in the Jharkhand assembly.
The former editor of The Telegraph and The Asian Age arrived in Ranchi on Sunday evening and will file his nomination on Monday, the last date to enter the fray. June 25 is the last day for withdrawing nominations.
He met state BJP president Ravindra Rai, vice president Rakesh Prasad, general secretary Bal Mukund Sahay and other leaders on Sunday.
Akbar joined the BJP in 2014. Earlier, he was in the Congress, and was its Lok Sabha MP from Kishanganj in Bihar during 1989-91.
The bye-election from Jharkhand was necessitated by the resignation of Kanwar Deep Singh of the Trinamool Congress.