Ram Nath Kovind The New President of India

Ram Nath Kovind, the candidate of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance, Became the 14th President of INDIA by defeating the Opposition’s candidate Meira Kumar.

Ram Nath Kovind has been elected the next President of India. The government-backed candidate won two-third of the votes cast by an electoral college of MPs and state lawmakers. Flowers and extra security had arrived at the former Bihar governor’s home in Delhi long before the official announcement and sweets were passed around at his hometown in Uttar Pradesh. Mr Kovind, 71, will be sworn in on July 25.

In the final vote count, NDA nominee Kovind received 65.6 per cent votes translating into 702,044 electoral college votes, while UPA candidate Meira Kumar managed to get 34.35 per cent (367,314 votes). According to reports, there was cross voting in UP, Gujarat and Goa during the elections, which resulted into Kovind’s massive 2/3rd votes.

522 MPs voted for Kovind, while 225 parliamentarians voted for Meira Kumar.

Current President Pranab Mukherjee’s term is ending on July 24 and Kovind will take oath the next day to become India’s 14th President.

In the last Presidential polls held in 2012, Pranab Mukherjee had defeated PA Sangma by over 69 per cent votes.

Great Responsibility, Says Ram Nath Kovind, New President Of India

“It is a great responsibility, my job will be to uphold and protect the Constitution. My election to this post is a sign of the greatness of India’s democracy,” Mr Kovind said after the results showed him take an unassailable lead over Opposition candidate Meira Kumar.

Here is your 10-point cheat-sheet to this story:

  • Some 4,800 members of parliament and state assemblies cast votes on Monday to choose between Mr Kovind and Meira Kumar, a former speaker backed by a 17-member bloc of opposition parties.
  • “We have fought a principled fight… we are fighting for values that most people of the country believe in,” Ms Kumar said this morning.
  • Counting began at 11 am with the ballot box of Parliament House being opened first, followed by the ones received from all the states.
  • The presidential poll on Monday saw nearly 99 per cent voting, the highest ever, according to returning officer said. Polling was held simultaneously at 32 polling stations — one in Parliament House and one each in 29 state assemblies and two union territories with assemblies.
  • Ram Nath Kovind is a Dalit leader and a farmer’s son, and his humble origins and simple lifestyle were stressed by BJP leaders.
  • The former Bihar Governor has served two terms as a member of the Rajya Sabha. He is a trained lawyer who has appeared at the High Court and Supreme Court.
  • PM Modi’s choice of Mr Kovind was seen as a masterstroke to divide the opposition and keep allies together as well as a move to consolidate its growing support among politically vital backward castes.
  • Mr Kovind will be the second Dalit President of India after KR Narayanan.
  • Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) broke ranks with the opposition to support for Mr Kovind and the BJP’s partner Shiv Sena, which has in the last two Presidential elections voted against its own alliance, too has supported Mr Kovind.
  • Ms Kumar’s support to Mr Kovind came as a big blow to the opposition, which had picked the Presidential elections as an occasion to forge an anti-BJP bloc ahead of the 2019 general elections.

A lawyer by profession, Kovind has worked extensively in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

Kovind has been the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) Scheduled Caste Morcha chief (1998-2002) and the President of the All-India Koli Samaj. He also served as the national spokesperson of the party. The saffron party had even tired to project him as an alternative to Mayawati in Uttar Pradesh.

Kovind was enrolled as an advocate in 1971 with the Bar Council of Delhi. He became the Advocate-on-Record of the Supreme Court in 1978 and practised in Delhi High Court and Supreme Court for about 16 years till 1993.

He was appointed as the Governor of Bihar on August 8, 2015. He was elected to the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh during the two terms of 1994-2000 and 2000-2006.

Kovind served as member of the board of management of the BR Ambedkar University, Lucknow. He also served as member of board of governors of Indian Institute of Management, Kolkata.

Kovind also represented India in United Nations (New York) and addressed the UN General Assembly in October, 2002.

PM Modi Congratulates Ram Nath Kovind, 14th President of India

PM Modi Congratulates Ram Nath Kovind, Who Will Be India's 14th President

As soon as the announcement of Mr Kovind’s massive win was made, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted to congratulate the former Bihar Governor.

Congratulations to Shri Ram Nath Kovind Ji on being elected the President of India! Best wishes for a fruitful and inspiring tenure… Gladdened by the extensive support for Shri Ram Nath Kovind Ji among MPs and across various states. I thank members of the electoral college,” he said in a series of tweets.

The Prime Minister also tweeted two photos of himself with Mr Kovind, one from 20 years ago and the other from present times.

 

71-year-old Mr Kovind, who will be the second Dalit to hold the top constitutional position after KR Narayanan, received 2,930 votes with a value of 7,02,044, returning officer Anoop Mishra said. His opponent Meira Kumar got 1,844 votes with a value of 3,67,314.

“I congratulate Shri Ram Nath Kovindji for becoming the President of India. My best wishes with Shri Kovindji as it has fallen upon him to uphold Constitution in letter&spirit in these challenging times,” Ms Kumar said.

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BJP chief Amit Shah too took to Twitter to congratulate Mr Kovind, who is the first BJP member to be elected President.

“Congratulations to Shri Ram Nath Kovind ji for emphatic victory in the 2017 Presidential elections. His victory is truly historic,” Mr Shah tweeted.

The presidential poll on Monday saw nearly 99 per cent voting, the highest ever, according to the returning officer. Polling was held simultaneously at 32 polling stations — one in Parliament House and one each in 29 state assemblies and two union territories with assemblies.