Former West Bengal governor and retired IAS officer and diplomat, Gopalkrishna Gandhi is the opposition’s choice for the position of the vice-president candidate. The grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, Gopalkrishna was born on April 22, 1945 to Devdas Gandhi and C Rajagopalachari’s daughter Lakshmi. He has on various occasions served some of the highest diplomatic roles in the country. Apart from an exuberant career in politics, Gandhi is also well known to have been vocally critical of several government policies.
Gandhi completed his Masters in English Literature from St. Stephens college and soon after served as an IAS officer from 1968 to 1992. He has also been the Secretary to the Vice President from 1985 to 1987, Joint Secretary to President from 1987 to 1992 and Secretary to President in 1997. Further, he has also served as the Minister (Culture) in the High Commission of India, UK, and as the Director of The Nehru Centre in London. He was also appointed as the Ambassador for India in Iceland and Norway.
Read here columns by Gopalkrishna Gandhi
Between 2004 and 2009 Gandhi also served as the governor of West Bengal. During his time at Bengal, Gandhi was heavily critical of the Left ruling government for the Nandigram crisis. While his firm stance on the issue earned him the wrath of the ruling government, he also managed to earn a large amount of respect from other governors. On other occasions as well, Gandhi has been unabashedly critical of the government. For instance, in 2014, he called the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) a ‘government hachet.’ In 2015 in light of the brutal death of Mohammad Akhlaq at Dadri, Gandhi was highly critical of mob lynchings in the name of cow protection.
Gandhi’s literary career encompasses the Hindi translation of Vikram Seth’s “Suitable boy,” the play, “Dara Shukoh,” and several English non fictions.