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Venkaiah Naidu elected India's vice president

06 August 2017

In all 771 out of 785 MPs cast their votes.

Incumbent Vice-President Hamid Ansari, who held the position for two consecutive terms, will demit office on August 10.

The BJP and its allies enjoy a majority in the 545-member lower house of parliament but not in the upper house, weakening its ability to pass legislation. Naidu will create new heights in Parliamentary democracy.

The victory if Naidu in the vice-presidential election after the BJP's emergence as the largest party in the Upper House is significant for the Narendra Modi government.

He was leader of the BJP Legislature Party in Andhra Pradesh, state general secretary and state unit chief. Sources said an Independent MP, two IUML MPs, four Trinamool Congress and two Congress members and an NCP MP were among those who didn't vote. The voting is done through secret ballot implying that parties can not issue whips to their MPs and anti-defection laws do not apply. The total number of votes are 790 including both the houses and the nominated members.

Known for coining witty acronyms, Naidu did so recently with the initials of APJ Abdul Kalam when he said APJAK stands for "Anything is possible with Just Attitude and Karma".

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Naidu will be the 13th person to hold the second highest Constitutional post.

Naidu's rapport with Opposition leaders and his experience as a Rajya Sabha member is expected to help him in running the House smoothly. But the 15th election for the Vice President that the National Democratic Alliance candidate won has created a few records of its own. "I congratulate him on his victory".

Opposition nominee Gopalkrishna Gandhi secured 244 votes.

To questions on cross-voting, Azad said the opposition parties in their individual capacity will enquire into reports of cross-voting.

I am confident Venkaiah Naidu will serve nation as a diligent & dedicated Vice President, committed to the the goal of nation building, PM Modi tweeted.

"Whether it is winning or losing, the opposition never compromises on ideology".

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The candidate who gets 396 votes will win the election.

Interested in politics since childhood, Naidu was an active participant in "Jai Andhra Movements" of 1972.

Naidu is a powerful orator.

With Naidu out of the political scene, there are worries in Andhra Pradesh. The Lok Sabha now has 545 members and the Rajya Sabha 244.

He was also the Central BJP's pointsman for its expansionist plans down South.

Once an Advani protege, Naidu vigorously backed Modi for the Prime Minister's post before the 2014 elections. Naidu had been instrumental in most of the key decisions taken by the Modi government.

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While addressing the meeting, the Prime Minister said that the way in which five years before independence had a radical change, the country got freedom.