The President of India is the first citizen of the country and is the highest Constitutional post in the country. The Electoral College elects the President of India, which includes the elected members of both the houses of Parliament, the elected members of the legislative assemblies of the states and the elected members of the legislative assemblies of the Union Territories of Delhi and Puducherry and the representation of its members is preferential. Their vote is single transferable and their second choice is counted too.
The President's tenure is 5 years and no law can be imposed in India without the President's signature. Through this article, the list of the candidates who have been elected so far and some interesting facts are also given which will give some ideas about the Presidents of India.
1. Dr. Rajendra Prasad
Dr. Rajendra Prasad was the first President of India, who had worked as president for two terms. He was also the President of the Constituent Assembly and the Chief Leader of the Indian Independence Movement. He was awarded Bharat Ratna in 1962.
2. Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan
Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan was born on September 5, 1888, and this day is celebrated as Teacher's Day. He was awarded Bharat Ratna in 1954.
3. Dr. Zakir Husain
Dr. Zakir Husain became the first Muslim President of India and died at his post. The immediate Vice President, V.V. Giri was made the acting President. After that, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Mohammad Hidayatullah became acting President from 20 July 1969 to 24 August 1969. He was the most famous tabla player of India
Mohammad Hidayatullah was awarded the Padma Bhushan in the field of art by the Government of India in 2002. He also brought a revolution of education in India. Under his leadership National Muslim University Jamia Millia Islamia was established.
4. V. V. Giri
V.V Giri was the fourth President of India. His full name was Varahagiri Venkata Giri. He became the only person to be elected President as an independent candidate. In 1975 he was awarded with Bharat Ratna.
5. Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed
Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed was the fifth President of India. He was the second President who died in the post of the President. BD Jattha was made Acting President.
6. Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy
Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy became the sixth President of India. He was the first Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. He was directly elected to the post from Lok Sabha speaker and became the youngest President who occupied Rashtrapati Bhavan and contested twice for the post of president.
7. Giani Zail Singh
Prior to becoming the President, he was also the Chief Minister of Punjab and the Minister at the Centre. He also used Pocket Veto on the Indian Post Office Bill. During his presidency, many incidents took place, such as the Operation Blue Star, the assassination of Indira Gandhi and the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
8. R. Venkataraman
R. Venkataraman was elected as the President of India from 25 July 1987 to 25 July 1992. Earlier he was Vice-President of India from 1984 to 1987. He has received many honours from different parts of the world. He is a receiver of Tamra Patra for his contributions in India's freedom struggle. Besides this the Russian government had conferred the Soviet Land Prize for writing the travelogue on former Tamil Nadu Prime Minister, Kumaraswami Kamaraj's.
9. Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma
He was the eighth Vice President of India before becoming president. From 1952 to 1956 he was the Chief Minister of Bhopal and Cabinet Minister from 1956 to 1967. The International Bar Association gave them the 'Living Legend of Law Award of Recognition' due to multi-achievements in the legal profession.
10. K R Narayanan
K. R. Narayanan was the first Dalit President of India and the first Malayali person to receive the highest office of the country. He was the first President to vote in the Lok Sabha elections and addressed the state assembly.
11. Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam
Dr. A. P.J. Abdul Kalam came to be known as ‘Missile Man of India’. He was the first scientist who took over the post of President and the first President of India who won the most votes. In his directorial, Rohini-1 satellites, Agni and Prithvi missiles were successfully launched. The Pokhran-II nuclear tests conducted in India in 1998 after the original nuclear test of 1974 saw him in a pivotal political, organisational and technical role. He was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1997.
12. Shrimati Pratibha Singh Patil
She was the Governor of Rajasthan before becoming the President. From 1962 to 1985 she was a member of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly five times and was elected from Amravati to the Lok Sabha in 1991. Not only this, she is also the first woman president to fly Sukhoi.
13. Pranab Mukherjee
Pranab Mukherjee was the finance minister in the central government before contesting the presidential election. He was awarded the best Parliamentary Award in 1997 and Padma Vibhushan, India's second highest civilian honour in 2008.
14. Ram Nath Kovind
Ram Nath Kovind was born on 1 October, 1945 in Uttar Pradesh, India. He is an Indian lawyer and politician. He is the 14th and current President of India. He became President on 25 July, 2017 and is a member of Bhartiya Janata party. He is the former Governor of Bihar. His approach towards political problems earned him praise across the political spectrum. As, a Governor his achievements was the creation of judicial commission to investigate corruption in universities.