Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson Gopalkrishna Gandhi was on 11 July 2017 named as the Opposition candidate for the 2017 Vice-Presidential Election.
His nomination was announced by Congress president Sonia Gandhi after eighteen parties jointly approved Gandhi as their vice presidential candidate in a meeting. The meeting was attended by Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Manmohan Singh as well as senior leaders of Trinamool Congress, Left parties, Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagham.
The 2017 Vice-Presidential Elections are scheduled to be held on 5 August 2017 as outgoing Vice-President Hamid Ansari is about to complete his term on 10 August 2017.
The total electoral college for the Vice-Presidential Elections is 790, which includes members of both houses of Parliament.
There are 233 members along with 12 nominated members in the Rajya Sabha and 543 members along with two nominated members in the Lok Sabha, who are eligible to vote. At present, the BJP-led NDA accounts for nearly two-thirds of the electoral college votes.
Who is Gopalkrishna Gandhi?
• Gopal Krishna Gandhi was born to Devdas Gandhi and C Rajagopalachari’s daughter Lakshmi in April 1945.
• Gandhi served as an Indian Administrative Service officer from 1968 to 1992, after taking voluntarily retirement from service.
• As an IAS officer, he served in different capacities in Tamil Nadu. He also served as the Secretary to the Vice President from 1985 to 1987, Joint Secretary to President from 1987 to 1992 and Secretary to President in 1997.
• He served as the Minister (Culture) in the High Commission of India, UK and as the Director of The Nehru Centre in London.
• Gandhi also served as High Commissioner for India in Lesotho. He was later appointed as the High Commissioner for India in Sri Lanka in 2000 and as Ambassador of India in Norway in 2002. He also served as Ambassador of India in Iceland.
• Later in 2004, Gandhi was appointed as the Governor of West Bengal, a post which is served till 2009.
• Apart from serving the country, Gandhi also wrote a novel on Sri Lanka’s Tamil plantation workers and a play in verse on Dara Shikoh. He also translated Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy into Hindi.
Who: Gopalkrishna Gandhi
When: 11 July 2017
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