With an overwhelming majority, Ram Nath Kovind has been elected as India’s 14th President.
The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) nominee received an overwhelming majority of 65% votes in the Electoral College, defeating opposition candidate and former Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar.
The 71-year-old former Governor of Bihar, who will be the second Dalit to hold the top constitutional position, received 2930 votes with a value of 702044.
The Vice-Presidential election will be held on August 5. While former party president Venkaiah Naidu is the NDA candidate, former West Bengal Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi is the Opposition pick.
About the Composition of Electoral College
The President is indirectly elected by the electoral college. The Electoral College comprises Members of Parliament and members of Legislative Assemblies of all the States. A total of 4,896 voters — 4,120 MLAs and 776 elected MPs — were eligible to cast their ballot. MLCs of States are not part of the electoral college. While the value of an MLA’s vote depends on the population of his or her State, the value of an MP’s vote remains the same at 708.
The office-holder serves for a term of five years; there are no term limits. The oath of the President is taken in the presence of the Chief Justice of India, and in his/her absence, by the most senior judge of theSupreme Court of India.
Who is Ram Nath Kovind?
♦ October 1, 1945, in Uttar Pradesh’s Kanpur Dehat; youngest of three brothers.
♦ After graduating in law from a Kanpur college, Kovind had gone to Delhi to prepare for the Indian Administrative Services. He failed to pass it twice but made it in third attempt. He, however, did not join as he was selected for the allied services and started practising the law. He used to practice in Supreme Court and Delhi High Court.
♦ Married to Savita Kovind, Ram Nath Kovind has a son Prashant Kumar, and a daughter, Swati.
♦ He entered politics in 1994 when he became a member of Parliament in Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh and served as an MP for two consecutive terms till 2006.
♦ In 1977, Kovind had worked as the private secretary of then Prime Minister Morarji Desai. Later Kovind had also served as national spokesperson of BJP.
♦ He is a former President of the BJP Dalit Morcha (1998-2002) and President of the All-India Koli Samaj as well as the SC/ST representative at IIM-Calcutta.
♦ He had represented India in the United Nations in New York and addressed United Nations General Assembly in October 2002.
♦ On August 8, 2015, Kovind was appointed governor of Bihar.