This Article is From Jul 16, 2022

Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar Is BJP's Vice Presidential Candidate

PM Modi tweeted his support for Mr Dhankar saying he has "excellent knowledge" of the Constitution and is alsowell-versed with legislative affairs.

New Delhi:

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar will be the ruling NDA's candidate for the post of Vice President of India, BJP chief JP Nadda announced today. "After all considerations and consultations, we have decided to announce kisan putra (farmer's son) Jagdeep Dhankhar as the BJP and NDA's candidate for Vice President," he said at a press conference, adding that he established himself as a "people's Governor".

Sources say Mr Dhankhar's nomination will send a big message to the Jat community, to which he belongs. The Jat community in Western Uttar Pradesh had supported the BJP even after massive farmers' protests against the now-repealed farm laws. 

Jat voters will also play a big role in next year's Rajasthan elections. 

Mr Dhankhar has been associated with the BJP for the last two decades and many political observers suggest he has been "rewarded" for clashing with Ms Banerjee in favour of the BJP. 

The decision was taken at the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) parliamentary board meeting at its Delhi headquarters. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, along with several top leaders like Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan were present at the meeting.

PM Modi tweeted his support for Mr Dhankar saying he has "excellent knowledge" of the Constitution and is also well-versed with legislative affairs.

"Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar Ji has excellent knowledge of our Constitution. He is also well-versed with legislative affairs. I am sure that he will be an outstanding Chair in the Rajya Sabha & guide the proceedings of the House with the aim of furthering national progress," he said.

In 2017, the party had named the then cabinet minister M Venkaiah Naidu, a former BJP president and veteran parliamentarian, as its vice presidential candidate.

Mr Naidu had won the election comfortably to occupy the second highest constitutional post in the country. His current term ends on August 10.

Mr Dhankhar has often grabbed headlines for his prickly relationship with opposition leader and Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee since taking over as Governor in July 2019. While he has accused the state government of "extreme appeasement, communalised patronage, and mafia syndicate extortion," Trinamool Congress leaders have called Mr Dhankhar "communal". 

The Bengal Governor had earlier this month urged the Bengali intelligentsia to "break their silence" on what he described as the "decimation of democratic values" in the state.

Just as the BJP-led NDA announced Governor Dhankar as its Vice Presidential candidate, Mamata Banerjee called a meeting of Trinamool MPs of both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha in Kolkata to discuss her party's strategy regarding the elections scheduled on August 06, and also to finalise party's plan of action during the monsoon session of the parliament. This meeting will be held at Ms Banerjee's residence in Kolkata at 4 pm on July 21.

The electoral college for picking the next vice president, who is also the Rajya Sabha chairperson by default, comprises members of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

Out of Parliament's current strength of 780, the BJP alone has 394 MPs, more than the majority mark of 390.

The last date for filing nomination papers for the poll is July 19 and the election is scheduled for August 6.