NEW DELHI: Ten Rajya Sabha members will vote to elect the next President of India, but may not get to work as Parliamentarians soon after as their terms expire in the next two months. Two Lok Sabha members may not get an opportunity to participate in the Presidential election. The election this year is not without irony, as the timing of the poll takes away memories parliamentarians may cherish.
The electoral college, which consists of 776 MPs and 4,120 MLAs, got locked on the day the Presidential election was announced. Consequently, there can’t be any by-elections for the two Houses, nor of any Assembly. Seats from Anantnag in J&K and Gurdaspur in Punjab are vacant.
Rajya Sabha member MP Shantaram Naik (BJP) from Goa will vote for President but won’t get to work under him as he retires on July 28. Nine other Rajya Sabha members will also vote in the election but won’t serve as Parliamentarians under the new President even for a fortnight.
Congress strategist and party president Sonia Gandhi’s advisor Ahmed Patel retires on August 18. Patel and CPI (M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury are the principal movers in the 17-party Opposition jamboree for the election. Yechury retires from the Upper House on August 18. Derek O’Brien, D Bandyopadhyay, Dola Sen, Shukhendu Shekhar of TMC, and P Bhattacharya of the Congress, Union Minister Smriti Z Irani and Dilipbhai Pandya of the BJP also retire from the Rajya Sabha in August.
Two nominated Lok Sabha members and 12 of Rajya Sabha do not enjoy voting rights in the Presidential poll.