Thursday, July 11, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

NDA favours Shekhawat as Vice-President

New Delhi, July 10
Former Rajasthan Chief Minister Bhairon Singh Shekhawat is emerging as the choice of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to succeed Mr Krishan Kant as Vice-President.

NDA sources said a formal announcement to this effect is unlikely before the meeting of the ruling combine which is likely to take place in about four to five days.

Samata Party leader and Railway Minister Nitish Kumar came out publicly in support of the BJP today. The BJP, the leader of the NDA alliance, could, he said, ‘rightfully claim’ the Vice-President’s post.

Election of Vice-President is relatively an easy task compared to the Presidential poll that has a large electoral college which includes members of legislative assemblies and legislative councils, besides both Houses of Parliament. A Vice-President is elected by Members of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

The NDA demonstrated its strength in Parliament when it successfully passed the Prevention Of Terrorism Bill in the joint session, notwithstanding the defeat suffered in the Opposition-dominated Rajya Sabha.

About the resignation of Maharashtra Governor P.C. Alexander, the sources said the mood in the NDA was to utilise his services. Having propped him as one of the front-runners for the post of President, it had become the moral obligation for the ruling coalition to provide him an ‘honourable retirement posting of his choice.’

Though Dr Alexander has not made any formal claim for the vice-presidentship, the NDA is not likely to consider his candidature. He cannot possibly be considered for the post because Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, the NDA’s choice for presidentship, comes from the same southern region and both are from minority communities. Under these circumstances, his appointment as the country’s next Vice-President defies political logic, the sources said. UNI


Vice-President poll notification issued
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 10
The process for the vice-presidential poll was initiated today with the Election Commission issuing a formal notification for the August 12 polls.

The last date for filing of nominations will be July 24 while the last date for withdrawal of candidature will be July 27.

The scrutiny of nomination papers will be held on July 25 and the polling, if necessary, will be held here on August 12 between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Counting will be taken up on the same day at 6 p.m.

A total of 790 electors from the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha would cast their votes to elect the next Vice-President of the country.

The term of the incumbent Vice-President Krishan Kant expires on August 20 and the vacancy has to be filled before that.


Plea seeks stay on presidential election

New Delhi, July 10
The presidential poll, which has already run into several controversies, now faces the threat of being stayed if the Delhi High Court admits a petition challenging the legality of the nomination papers of the two main candidates.

In a petition filed in the court today, senior advocate Charan Lal Sahu said the nominations filed on behalf of Dr A.P.J. Kalam and Capt Lakshmi Sahgal had major flaws which had been overlooked by the Election Commission, which has been named as the main respondent.

As the poll is slated for July 15, the hearing of the petition is expected to come up within the next two days.

Mr Sahu has contended that the respective age of the two candidates has not been given as required by law, and several court cases have held this as enough reason for invalidating a nomination.

He also said there was no affidavit to show that the candidates have never been involved in any criminal activity, as required by law. UNI

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