Suspense over Union Minister Anand Sharma over

New Delhi: Congress on Saturday ended the suspense over the fate of Union Commerce Minister Anand Sharma by fielding him in the Rajya Sabha polls from Rajasthan, two months after the expiry of his term in the House.

57-year old Sharma, who hails from Himachal Pradesh, shifts to Rajasthan as his party was not not in a position to get him re-elected from his home state, where BJP runs the government.

His term expired on April two and since then there has been speculation over fielding him from Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. Sharma has to get re-elected to retain his place in the Cabinet.

Maharashtra had witnessed protests from some local Congressmen when talk of Sharma's nomination gained ground there.

Sharma's shifting to Rajasthan resulted in dashing the hopes of former Union Minister Santosh Bagrodia who failed to get renomination. This will be Sharma's third term in the Upper House.

Former Rajasthan Minister Ask Ali Tak and retiring Rajya Sabha member Narendra Budania were the two other Congress nominees from Rajasthan.

Tak appears to have got the nomination as there was not a single member from the minority community among the 20 Congress members from the state in the Lok Sabha.

Budania, who was elected to the Rajya Sabha last year in a bypoll, belongs to the influential Jat community.

In Madhya Pradesh, PCC Chief Suresh Pachouri's attempts to gain entry in the Rajya Sabha failed with the AICC deciding in favour of Vijaylakshmi Sadho, a Dalit leader, who was a minister in the Digvijay Singh government.

According to Congress sources, AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh was not in favour of giving a ticket to Pachouri, who has had four terms in the Rajya Sabha earlier.

Congress had yesterday announced the candidature of Union Minister Ambika Soni from Punjab and its General Secretary Mohsina Kidwai from Chhattisgarh for the biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha.

The party had also nominated former Union Minister and in charge of the Central Election Committee of the party Oscar Fernandes from Karnataka.

AICC general secretary and Rajya Sabha member from Karnataka B K Hariprasad whose term is coming to an end, also failed to get a nomination from there as the party can get only one member re-elected from there on the basis of its own strength.