Members of Parliament will cast their ballot today to elect the next Vice President of India and the result will be out by 7pm in the evening. NDA candidate M Venkaiah Naidu is all set to score an easy win over Opposition candidate Gopal Krishna Gandhi as the ruling combination has a comfortable majority in the Parliament. The electoral college which elects the vice president, who is also the ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, consists of elected and nominated members of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha.
The total strength of the two Houses is 790, but there are two vacancies in the Lok Sabha and one in the Rajya Sabha. BJP MP in Lok Sabha Chhedi Paswan is barred from casting vote following a judicial pronouncement.
According to existing political equations in the Parliament, NDA candidate Venkaiah Naidu is likely to get around 474 votes while opposition candidate Gopal Krishna Gandhi may get around 257 votes.
The BJD and the JD(U) which had supported NDA nominee Ramnath Kovind for the post of president, have decided to back opposition nominee Gandhi.
Though the JD(U) has broken ties with ‘mahagathbandhan’ and joined hands with the BJP to form a new government in Bihar, it has decided to vote for Gandhi, a former governor of West Bengal.
Members of Parliament will use special pens for marking their choice in the election to be held between 10 am and 5 pm today.
The counting of votes will commence after polling and the results will be declared by 7.00 pm, Election Commission officials said quoting precedents.
No whip can be issued by political parties as the election is through a secret ballot.
The term of the present incumbent Hamid Ansari, who has held the post for two consecutive terms, is coming to an end on August 10.