Days after his thumping victory in the vice presidential polls, former West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar has on Thursday - August 11 taken oath as India's 14th Vice President in the swearing-in ceremony held at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Dhankhar will be succeeding Venkaiah Naidu and assuming the nation's second highest post, Dhankhar will also be serving as the Chairman of Rajya Sabha, the upper house of Parliament.
Naidu's term ended on Wednesday and the outgoing leader had a farewell recently where he was greeted by the government for his service to the nation. On Thursday, Dhankhar has become the new Vice President and his oath of office was administered by President Droupadi Murmu. The ceremony had the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Ministers Amit Shah, Nitin Gadkari, Rajnath Singh, Nirmala Sitharaman and others.
Among the participants were outgoing Vice President Venkaiah Naidu, former President Ram Nath Kovind, former Vice President Hamid Ansari, and incumbent Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla. The Vice Presidential polls were held on August 6 in which BJP-led NDA candidate Dhankhar and the opposition candidate Margaret Alva contested in what otherwise remained as the polls with the already-known winner.
As per the constitution, the Vice President will be elected by the electoral college consisting of only MPs of both the Houses of Parliament. While the nominated MPs can't vote, the elected MPs stamped their ballots on August 6. As the BJP and alliance have a clear majority with the support of the regional parties, it was already known that Dhankhar would triumph in the race, which was the result eventually.
The votes were counted on the same day and it was later announced that Dhankhar has won the polls. Five days after the thumping victory, Dhankhar has now taken oath as India's 14th Vice President. As Dhankhar has ascended to the national post, he has been receiving wishes from across the nation. Sharing pictures of the ceremony on social media, Prime Minister Modi wrote, "Attended the oath-taking ceremony of Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar Ji. I congratulate him on becoming India's Vice President and wish him the very best for a fruitful tenure."
Earlier before taking the oath, Jagdeep Dhankhar paid respects to the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi at the latter's memorial in Delhi. 71-year-old Dhankhar was born on 18th May 1951 in the Jhunjhunu district of Rajasthan. A Physics graduate from the University of Rajasthan, Jaipur, Dhankhar has pursued LLB from the same university. As a lawyer, he practised at Rajasthan High Court and later in the Supreme Court.
He also served as the President of the Rajasthan High Court Bar Association. In 1989, Dhankhar was elected as Lok Sabha MP from his home turf on a Janata Dal ticket. In 1990, Dhankhar has served as the Union Minister of Parliamentary Affairs in the Chandra Sekhar cabinet and in 1991, he joined Congress only to get defeated in Ajmer in the 1991 Lok Sabha polls. In 1993, he was elected as an MLA in Rajasthan and ten years later, he joined the BJP, which was his last political stop.
Dhankhar was a member of the 2008 assembly election campaign committee of the BJP in Rajasthan and in 2016, he headed the BJP's law and legal affairs department. In the second Modi ministry, Dhankhar was appointed as the Governor of West Bengal in July 2019 and he held the post until his candidacy was announced for Vice President by the ruling BJP. In a landslide victory, Dhankhar secured 528 votes while his contender Alva got 182 votes and now, Dhankhar has taken oath as the 14th Vice President of India.
Attended the oath-taking ceremony of Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar Ji. I congratulate him on becoming India's Vice President and wish him the very best for a fruitful tenure. @jdhankhar1 @VPSecretariat pic.twitter.com/6FyEnR6wWT— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 11, 2022