New Delhi, July 9: The Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) will hold its parliamentary board meeting on Sunday, likely to decide the next Vice-Presidential candidate for the upcoming elections on August 5. The meeting will be attended by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah. The announcement is likely to be made by Shah. The tenure of the Vice President Hamid Ansari ends on August 10. In Gazette notification, the last date for nominations is July 19 and it will be submitted to returning officer Shumsher Sheriff.
Among the contenders, the names of Sushma Swaraj, Veteran leader Kalraj Mishra, former Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal and M Venkaiah Naidu are doing rounds in corridors of party. However, the decision may surprise the political observers who were stunned by the party’s decision to field Ramnath Kovind as the next Presidential candidate. The meeting was delayed earlier as the Prime Minister Narendra Modi was outside India to attend G-20 Summit in Hamburg. Amit Shah will be leaving for his three-day tour to Gujarat after the announcement of the candidate. The meeting is likely to be attended by other senior leaders too.
The chances for Kalraj Mishra and Prakash Singh Badal being announced as BJP’s vice-presidential nominee are relatively high. While Kalraj Mishra is expecting a respectable exit from the active politics after attaining age of 75, Prakash Singh Badal may be offered the post to pose as the joint candidate of National Democratic Alliance. During the first term of NDA, Simranjeet Singh Maan was elected as the vice president.
Opposition parties including Congress are in a fix over the candidate. After facing the ire of other parties, some Congress strategies were of the opinion the party may support the candidate proposed by other parties too.