Ram Nath Kovind was elected as the 14th President of the country as 522 MPs voted for him. His opponent Meira Kumar got 225 votes. Kovind defeated Kumar, a former Lok Sabha speaker, garnering more than 65 per cent of the votes in the Electoral College, the Returning Officer for the poll announced.
A total of 4,896 voters – 4,120 MLAs and 776 elected MPs – were eligible to cast their ballot. MLCs of states with legislative council are not part of the electoral college. While the value of an MLA’s vote depends on the population of his or her state, the value of an MP’s vote remains the same at 708.
The 71-year old Kovind, who will be the second Dalit to hold the top constitutional position, received 2930 votes with a value of 702044, the returning officer, Anoop Mishra informed PTI. Kumar, also a Dalit, polled in 1844 votes with a value of 367314.
The polling was marked by cross-voting in various states where many opposition members favoured Kovind.
A festive atmosphere prevailed outside the residence of Kovind in Maharishi Dayanand Vihar colony of Kalyanpur with people exchanging sweets and embracing each other as the results of the presidential poll were declared.
Even before the results were declared, people offered prayers and performed yagnas and havans seeking victory for Kovind. Special prayers were held at the Paroaka temple in the village, where Kovind used to worship regularly till he resided in the village.
With inputs from PTI.