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Low-key office-bearer Anil Hegde is JD(U) candidate for Bihar RS by-poll


PATNA: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's JD(U) on Monday announced its low profile top office-bearer Anil Hegde as the candidate for the by-election to a Rajya Sabha seat which has been necessitated by the death of multiple-term MP King Mahendra.

According to a statement issued by JD(U)) national president Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lalan, the party has "decided to field Shri Anil Hegde as a candidate for the by-election to the council of states from Bihar, left vacant due to the untimely death of our party MP Dr Mahendra Prasad".

Hegde has for long been the JD(U)'s national election officer, responsible for coordination between the party and the Election Commission during assembly and parliamentary polls. Known to keep a low profile, he has been closely associated with the Bihar chief minister, the party's de facto leader, for more than two decades.

The last date for nomination for the by-election is Wednesday, and voting, if required, will take place on May 30.

Besides Hegde, others who were speculated to be in the race were the party's voluble national secretary general K C Tyagi, the deceased MP's brother Bhola Sharma and another national secretary general Afaque Ahmed Khan who has often been credited with making JD(U) visible in the north-east.

Mahendra Prasad, better known as "King Mahendra" in political and social circles, had died in December last year at the ripe age of 81 years.

He was widely regarded as one of the richest parliamentarians in the country who made a humble beginning as a school teacher but rose in the world of pharmaceutical business and came to own three companies.