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Everything you wanted to know about the vice-president’s election

An electoral college of 790 members of Parliament including nominated members of both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha elect the vice-president.

india Updated: Jul 05, 2017 14:01 IST
Saubhadra Chatterji
Hamid Ansari  has served two terms as Vice-President o India.
Hamid Ansari has served two terms as Vice-President o India.(HT PHOTO)

Less than a month after the new President moves to Rashtrapati Bhavan, the country will see a new vice-president in August.

Hamid Ansari, the incumbent VP, has been at the position for two terms. Neither the ruling NDA nor the opposition has so far announced their candidates for the post of vice-president.

The Election Commission, responsible for conducting the Presidential and vice-presidential polls, has announced August 5 as the polling date. The results will be announced the same evening.

Although his position is largely titular, the vice-president takes an active part in running the Upper House of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) of which he is the chairperson.

VOTING PROCESS

While elected MPs and MLAs vote in the Presidential election, the VP is elected by only the members of the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.

Nominated members of Parliament can’t vote in the Presidential election. But they can do so to elect the VP.

The Electoral College for the election of the vice-president consists of the following members:

Rajya Sabha: Elected = 233, Nominated = 12

Lok Sabha: Elected = 543, Nominated = 2

Total = 790

A candidate needs 20 electors as proposers and at least another 20 electors as seconders for his nomination. The candidate also has to make a security deposit of Rs. 15,000.

Read more: EC issues notification for vice presidential election, begins nomination process

ROLE OF VICE PRESIDENT

The main function assigned to the vice-president in Indian Constitution is that of ex-officio chairman of the council of states (Rajya Sabha).

He ,however, may have another important role to play. In case of the demise or impeachment or resignation of the President, the vice-president becomes the acting President as the office of the head of the nation cannot be kept vacant.

In the order of hierarchy, the vice-president is next to the President and above the Prime Minister. He also goes on foreign tours to represent the country for diplomatic engagements. Generally, the vice-president goes to those places which the PM and the President have not visited.