Venkaiah Naidu elected Vice President of India, beats Gopal Gandhi by 272 votes

Senior BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu today won the vice-presidential election. As vice president, Naidu, a former union minister, will hold the crucial post of the Rajya Sabha chairman.

Veteran Bharatiya Janata Party leader Venakaiah Naidu today became Vice-President-elect. The former union minister’s win in the vice-presidential polls was expected with the BJP’s strong numbers reducing the contest between Naidu and Gopalkrishna Gandhi, the Opposition’s candidate, to a dead rubber. Naidu pipped Gandhi, winning 516 votes in the election as opposed to the Opposition candidate’s 244 votes.

Soon after the news of his winning the election broke, Naidu expressed gratitude to the Members of Parliament who voted for him, and vowed to uphold the constitution. “With all humility, I express my gratitude to every MP who supported my candidature cutting across party lines. I promise to uphold the Constitution and the high standards set by my esteemed predecessors,” Vice President-elect Naidu said in a series of tweets.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was quick to send a congratulatory message, posting on Twitter, “My mind is filled with memories of working with @MVenkaiahNaidu Garu, in the Party & Government. Will cherish this aspect of our association. I am confident @MVenkaiahNaidu will serve the nation as a diligent & dedicated Vice President, committed to the the goal of nation building.”



The Congress too extended its best wishes to Naidu saying in a statement, “Congress President, Sonia Gandhi, has extended best wishes to the Vice President elect, Venkaiah Naidu.”

The party’s statement went on essentially urge Naidu to assume a “non-partisan role” when he becomes the Rajya Sabha chairman. “The position of the Vice President of India has the crucial challenge of assuming a non-partisan role in running ‘The House of Elders’, which acts as a store house of wisdom and sage advice for the government. House of Elders is an important determinant of our democratic functioning to address appropriate checks and balances,” Sonia Gandhi said.

14 MPs DID NOT VOTE

Voting in the vice-presidential poll was held today, with 771 of the 785 eligible Members of Parliament casting their votes. 14 MPs (2 from BJP, 2 from INC, 2 from IUML, 4 from TMC, 1 from NCP; 1 from PMK and 2 Independents) were absent during voting.

As vice president, the 68-year-old Naidu, who was previously a senior minister Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet, becomes the de facto chairman of Rajya Sabha. He will take charge as Rajya Sabha chairman at 11 am on August 11 after being sworn-in as vice president at 10 am on the same day.

Naidu’s overseeing of Rajya Sabha sessions will work to provide the government with a boost in the upper house, where the National Democratic Alliance does not yet have a majority.

Naidu’s election to the V-P’s office, also means all of the constitutional posts in India (except the non-partisan Chief Justice of India) are now controlled by the Bharatiya Janata Party – the President of India (Ram Nath Kovind), Vice President of India (Venkaiah Naidu), Prime Minister of India (Narendra Modi) and Speaker of Lok Sabha (Sumitra Mahajan).

Born to a farmer’s family in Nellore, Andhra Pradesh, Naidu is a dyed-in-the-wool BJP worker who has been in active politics (including student politics) for over four decades. He was imprisoned during the Emergency between 1975 and 1977 and after coming out of jail, he became the Janata Party Youth Wing president of Andhra Pradesh.

The year 1978 marked his entry into public office after he was elected to the Andhra Pradesh Assembly. Rising through the ranks, Naidu went on to become the BJP national president in July, 2002. However, he held the post briefly, stepped down in December the same year. Two years later, he again became the BJP chief.

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Source By http://indiatoday.intoday.in

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