New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday filed his nomination papers for the Rajya Sabha bypoll from Gujarat, scheduled on July 5. Besides, Gujarat BJP OBC cell president Jugalji Thakor also filed his papers for the second Rajya Sabha seat from the state.

Notably, two Rajya Sabha seats fell vacant due to the election of Amit Shah and Smriti Irani to the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar and Amethi respectively. As per norms, a minister who is not a member of Parliament has to be elected to either House within six months of his or her swearing in.

Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and state BJP chief Jitu Vaghani were present as Jaishankar and Thakor submitted their nomination forms to the returning officer C B Pandya.

The last date of submitting nomination papers is June 25, while scrutiny of papers would be conducted on June 26, and the last date of withdrawal is June 28. Given its strength in the Assembly, the BJP is set to win both the seats, especially as the election will be held separately as per the Election Commissions notification.

Earlier in the day, in a big blow to Congress party, the Supreme Court refused to entertain its plea challenging the decision of the Election Commission to hold separate by polls for two vacant Rajya Sabha seats in the state.

The top court reportedly said that the only way to challenge the election is to approach the poll panel and file an election petition. The Congress party had demanded that the bypolls to the two vacant seats in Gujarat be held together as it felt that it could win one of the two Rajya Sabha seats vacated by Shah and Irani.