Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu has been nominated by the ruling National Democratic Alliance as its Vice-Presidential candidate. BJP chief Amit Shah announced Naidu’s nomination during a presser in New Delhi. He said that the nomination was finalised during a parliamentary meeting of the BJP where senior party leaders, as well as PM Narendra Modi, were present.
Naidu is pitted against Gopal Krishna Gandhi, who was picked by the Opposition for the post. The vice-presidential elections are scheduled to be held on August 5. July 18 is the last date to file nomination papers.
Senior political leaders across the country, from the BJP and its allies, congratulated the minister for his nomination. PM Modi, Union Ministers Rajnath Singh, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Smriti Irani and Dr Harsh Vardhan, state chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, Shivraj Singh Chauhan and Dr Raman Singh, among others, congratulated Naidu on his nomination and wished him the best.
Congratulating Naidu, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said, “Want to congratulate Venkaiah ji on his candidature for the post of Vice President. He has not only played his role and fulfilled responsibilities as a political worker but also as a socio-political activist.”
“Venkaiah ji‘s contribution has been immense, will miss a good leader. Dignity of vice-president post will further enhance, I’m sure,” lauding Naidu’s contributions, Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal said, according to news agency ANI.
Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Panneerselvam also extended support to the NDA vice-presidential candidate, news agency ANI said.
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Naidu, currently Union Minister for Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation as well as the Information and Broadcasting, hails from Andhra Pradesh.
The 68-year-old was the chief of BJP in Andhra Pradesh from 1988 to 1993. He was elected as twice MLA to the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly. From 1993 to 2000, he was the General Secretary of the party at a pan-India level. In 1999, he ascended to the the position of Union Rural Development Minister during Atal Bihari Vajpayee government and served as the party’s spokesperson from 1996 to 2000. He became a member of the Upper House, for the first time in April 1988, and then again in 2004, 2010 and 2016.