New Delhi [India]: Margaret Alva, the Opposition candidate for the Vice-Presidential poll, filed her nomination for the Vice Presidential election on Tuesday.
She filed her nomination in the presence of Congress MPs Rahul Gandhi, Mallikarjun Kharge, NCP chief Sharad Pawar and other Opposition leaders. Opposition parties on Sunday decided to field former Rajasthan Governor and former Union minister Alva as their joint candidate for the vice presidential election.
Notably, today is the last date for filing nominations for the August 6 election.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar announced on Sunday, “We have unanimously decided to field Margaret Alva as our joint candidate for the post of Vice President.” The decision came after the opposition party leaders met in New Delhi at Sharad Pawar’s residence to select a joint VP candidate.
Alva, who is pitted against the NDA’s Jagdeep Dhankar who filed his nominations on Monday, said in a tweet: “It is a privilege and an honour to be nominated as the candidate of the joint Opposition for the post of Vice President of India. I accept this nomination with great humility and thank the leaders of the opposition for the faith they’ve put in me”.
“Margaret Alva, former Governor, former Union Minister, long time MP and very distinguished representative of India’s wonderful diversity is the common Opposition candidate for Vice-President,” tweeted senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Jairam Ramesh.
The term of Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu — who won the election comfortably in 2017 — ends on August 10.
The NDA has fielded West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar as its joint candidate for the post of Vice President. The decision to field Alva was taken at a meeting of opposition leaders of 17 parties at the residence of NCP supremo Sharad Pawar.
Jagdeep Dhankhar, who filed his nomination in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday, said that he is grateful to the PM and his able leadership for this opportunity.
“Not even in my dreams did I think that a common man like me would be given such an opportunity. A farmer’s son has filed his nomination today…Grateful to PM Modi and the leadership for this opportunity,” said Dhankhar after filing his nomination.
He filed his nomination papers for the Vice-President’s post on the day when Presidential elections are being held.
His name was announced for the second top constitutional post by BJP chief Jagat Prakash Nadda on Saturday.
Immediately after filing the nomination, Dhankhar said that he will strive for the democratic values of the country. “I will always strive to enhance the democratic values of the country. Never thought even in my dreams that a person with a humble background like me will get this opportunity.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Ministers Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, and BJP chief Nadda was present when Dhankar filed his nomination.
JP Nadda said Dhankhar was a “Kisan-Putra” (son of a farmer) who has established himself as a “people’s governor”. Nadda has also urged all the parties including UPA allies to support the NDA vice presidential candidate.
Dhankhar, who is a lawyer by profession, entered into politics in 1989. He became the governor of West Bengal in July 2019 and has made headlines since then over his tumultuous relations with the Mamata Banerjee government.
Earlier on Sunday, Jagdeep Dhankhar met Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who congratulated him on his nomination as NDA’s VP candidate and said his understanding of ground problems and constitutional knowledge will greatly benefit the country.
The Union Home Minister wrote in a tweet in Hindi, “Congratulations to Shri @jdhankhar1 ji on being elected as NDA’s Vice Presidential candidate. Born in a simple farmer family, Dhankhar ji’s life was dedicated to the welfare of the people and upliftment of the society.”
“I am sure that his understanding of ground problems and constitutional knowledge will be of great benefit to the country,” Shah tweeted.