Prime Minister Narendra Modi met newly elected Vice President Jagdeep Dankhar and congratulated him on the victory. (Photo: Twitter / @narendramodi)
New Delhi: Jagdeep Dankhar was elected as the new Vice President of India on Saturday. The 70-year-old NDA candidate defeated joint opposition candidate Margaret Alpha by a large margin of votes to become the 14th Vice President of India. Dhankhar received 528 votes while the 80-year-old Alpha received 182 votes.
Jagdeep Dhankhar, the former governor of West Bengal, will take over from M Venkaiah Naidu, 73, whose term ends on August 10. The newly elected vice president will be sworn in on August 11, after the incumbent Naidu steps down.
The opposition candidate Margaret Alpha Dinkhar congratulated and noted that while these elections are over, the battle will continue to protect the constitution, strengthen democracy and restore the dignity of Parliament.
President Draupadi Mormo said the nation would benefit from Dhankhar’s long and rich experience in public life. Congratulations to Jagdeep Dhankhar on his election as Vice President of India. The nation will benefit from your long and rich experience in public life. Mormo tweeted.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Dhankhar and congratulated him on the victory.
Federal Home Minister Amit Shah praised Dankhar’s victory and said, “It is a great pleasure for the nation that the son of a farmer, Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar, has been elected as Vice President of India. As Vice President and Chairman of Rajya Sabha, Shri Jagdeep Dankhar will prove to be the perfect guardian of the Constitution, I congratulate him on This is victory.”
As Dhankhar became the second Vice President of Rajasthan, Prime Minister Ashok Gehlot congratulated him on his victory saying: “Hearty congratulations and best wishes to Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar on his election as the Vice President of India. The people of Rajasthan are pleased that Shri Dhankhar has become the second Vice President of Rajasthan after Bhairon Singh Shekhawat Ji.”
Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi also congratulated Jagdeep Dankhar on the victory.
Nominated by the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA), which is led by the BJP, Dhankhar was to win as the Saffron Party has an absolute majority in the Lok Sabha and has 91 members in the Rajya Sabha.
With victory looming, BJP members began their celebrations even before the results were announced, outside Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi’s residence where Dhankar was located. The city of Jonghunu, the birthplace of Dhankhar, in Rajasthan, also witnessed exhilarating sights on this occasion.
As many as 725 deputies voted in the poll, 92.94 percent of the total votes, an official said, adding that 15 votes were declared invalid. Members of Parliament, including candidates, are entitled to vote on the Vice President’s ballot.
While the Electoral College consists of 788 members, since there are eight vacant seats in the Rajya Sabha, the actual strength is 780. The Trinamool Congress abstained from voting claiming that it had not been consulted during the nomination of Alpha as the opposition candidate. However, two of its deputies – Sisir Kumar Adhikari and Dibyendu Adhikari – broke ranks and cast their votes. The party has 36 deputies, including 23 deputies in the Lok Sabha.
Voter turnout this time was lower than the 98.2 percent recorded in the 2017 elections when M Venkaiah Naidu was elected as Vice President.