The Congress president Sonia Gandhi announced on Tuesday that Gopalkrishna Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, is the opposition candidate for the vice-presidential election. Sonia Gandhi said that eighteen parties decided on Gandhi as their vice presidential candidate. Talking about Gopalkrishna Gandhi, he is a former governor of West Bengal during the left regime, and also a former bureaucrat and a diplomat.
The name of Gandhi was firstly proposed by the Left parties’ for the Presidential candidate last month, but lastly, Meira Kumar became the common Opposition candidate. “We have spoken to Gopalkrishna Gandhi. He has agreed to be the Opposition’s candidate,” said Sonia Gandhi. As the opposition got to wait for the NDA to declare a candidate before it declared its own nominee for the Presidential election, it went in advance in giving a name of vice presidential candidate so as never to give the NDA a higher hand. In both the presidential and vice presidential elections the NDA’s monster majority will probably see its candidates through. On the other hand, the Opposition parties expect that Gandhi gets extra votes from some fence sitters like BJD.
The Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamta Banerjee, had not participated the Opposition’s meeting to choose their vice presidential candidate on Tuesday. However, she congratulated Gopalkrishna Gandhi. The elections for another vice president will be performed on August 5. Outgoing vice president Hamid Ansari finishes his term on August 10. The MPs of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha vote to choose the vice president. Ironically, the Bihar CM Nitish Kumar didn’t attend Tuesday’s meeting, had mooted the original idea for a United Opposition candidate, but later made a decision to support the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) candidate Ram Nath Kovind in the Presidential election to be performed on July 17.
His lack in the opposition’s meeting on the vice presidential election is also a sign that Kumar may want to put himself with the ruling dispensation, which includes a comfortable winning margin. On the other hand, the Opposition desires that Gandhi’s candidature will help in getting back again Nitish Kumar’s support. The Trinamool’s Rajya Sabha leader Derek O’Brien displayed the party at Tuesday’s meeting while Sharad Yadav stood set for JD(U). On the other hand, the BJP-led NDA is yet to nominate its candidate for vice presidential election.