New Delhi, March 11 (IANS) Amid political crisis in Madhya Pradesh, where the Congress government is teetering on the brink, party’s interim president Sonia Gandhi has started a consultation process for probable Rajya Sabha candidates.

Sonia met senior leaders on Wednesday and received feedback from them and also about political developments in Madhya Pradesh.

She met Chief Minister Kamal Nath, Maharashtra Minister and state Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat and leader of Opposition in Haryana Assembly Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has also met the party chief, but his nominee Rajiv Arora, a diamond merchant, is opposed by Sachin Pilot who is pitching for a party worker. Sources say Tariq Anwar could get ticket from the state.

Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel is in Delhi to meet Sonia Gandhi. He has come up with the name of Girish Devangan from the state.

Many young Congress leaders, including Jitin Prasada, Randeep Singh Surjewala, Rajiv Satav and Milind Deora, are in the race to get nomination for Rajya Sabha seats.

In Jharkhand the alliance partner is set to nominate Shibu Soren from the state.

Of the 55 Upper House members retiring, 13 are from the Congress. The party is likely to win two seats each from Rajasthan, MP and Chhattisgarh, and one seat each from Haryana, Gujarat and Maharashtra.

Despite being at loggerheads with allies, the Congress is eyeing one seat each from Bihar and Tamil Nadu and also a second seat from Maharashtra.

The Congress is said to have initiated talks the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) in Bihar and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) in Tamil Nadu to cut its loss to 11.

The Congress has given one seat to CPI-M in West Bengal.

–IANS

miz/prs

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