Tuesday, July 17, 2012

the single legged race to Indian Vice President


Complex is the System and strange are the ways of the people –  this woman seated on a horse with dagger has garnered enough attention or rather more that what she deserves !!

It is perhaps just another ornamental post – that of Indian Vice President, the second-highest office in India, after the President. The Vice President would ascend to the Presidency upon the death, resignation, impeachment, or other situations leading to the vacancy in the Office of President. The normal function of the Vice President is to serve as the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.
The Vice-President holds office for five years and the tenure of the present VP ends on 10th Aug 2012.  

The 14th Presidential Election is to be held in a couple of days and only a miracle can prevent Pranabda from becoming the President.   Even with the possibility of hung Parliaments, the post of President has become more of a jewel than of utility.  I had posted one on the way electoral votes -  http://sampspeak.blogspot.in/2012/06/understanding-indian-presidential.html  - understanding it is really complex with the  value of votes cast by elected members of State Legislative assemblies and both houses of Parliament being  decided as per provisions of article 55(2) of the Constitution of India.  The value of a MLA vote is no. of thousands of people represented by him.   Here is the illustrative table showing the value of vote.

With the heat on, now it is time for the elections to the post of Indian Vice-President.    Perhaps he would have dreamed of a sling at the President but Hamid Ansari should be too pleased with the second time offer of the UPA  as Vice-President.  With the support of the Left parties, the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party, the UPA holds enough votes in both Houses of Parliament to ensure a smooth sailing,   Though not with a great chance, and after the name of  Gopalakrishna Gandhi going around, the NDA has fielded Jaswant Singh just to offer opposition.  Mr. Singh, who is eminently qualified for the job, stands no chance of winning, but for the BJP this is an opportunity to try and keep its alliance together after the divisions that emerged within the NDA in choosing the candidate for the President’s post with all the NDA partners are united in backing Mr. Singh.  The opposition were not too happy with the present tenure of Hamid Ansari compounded  by his handling of Women’s Reservation Bill.

Even as I write that the candidate of NDA Jaswant Singh himself does not stand any chance, nomination papers have already been  filed by 26 others who represent varied background — from an autorickshaw driver to a tea vendor. Thirty-six nominations were filed till the evening, of which eight have been rejected and two persons have submitted two sets of nomination papers each.

The women’s on horse you saw is  Sunita Chaudhary, who claims to be North India’s first woman auto-rickshaw driver. Guiness Rishi, who has 388 flags and over 3,000 words tattooed on his body and Anand Singh Kushwah, a tea vendor from Gwalior are also in the fray.  Rishi has offered to tattoo the names of his proposers and seconders on his body. He has also offered to tattoo the names and flags of political parties supporting him in the elections on his face and  neck.

Be it Panchayat Elections or any other Local elections – the filing by non-serious candidates does unnecessary damage and hampers the process.  With EVMs capable of listing 16 in one unit and 64 in total, nos. beyond put unnecessary stress on the electoral process.  There are some who contest just for the sake of contesting or ‘for nuisance value !’.  Arising out of such nominations,  the rules for Presidential and Vice Presidential election were amended and a provision of 50 proposers and 50 seconders to every nomination paper was introduced.

While for local bodies and State legislature it is ‘voting right for all’ – the process is complicated with electoral college of State Legislative assemblies and members of both houses of Parliament for the President – that of Vice President is different.  The Vice-President is elected indirectly, by an electoral college consisting of members of both houses of the Parliament. The election of the Vice-President is  different from the election of the President—the members of state legislatures are not part of the electoral college for Vice Presidential election.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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