New Delhi– Veteran Congress leader and former Union minister Margaret Alva on Sunday expressed gratitude towards the Opposition parties for nominating her as the Vice Presidential candidate.
“It is a privilege and an honour to be nominated as the candidate of the joint opposition for the post of Vice President of India,” Alva said in a tweet.
She further thanked the leaders of the Opposition parties for putting faith on her.
“I accept this nomination with great humility,” Alva, who entered politics over 5 decades ago in 1969 by joining the Indian National Congress, said.
Five years later, she was elected to the Upper House of Parliament.
From 1975 to 1976, she served on the executive of the Congress Parliamentary party.
First elected to Rajya Sabha in 1974, Alva was re-elected in 1980, 1986 and 1992.
In the mid 80s, Alva served as Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs.
In 1985, after the assassination of Indira Gandhi and the landslide electoral victory of Rajiv Gandhi, Alva was appointed as the Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs, Sports, Women and Child development within the Ministry of Human Resource Development.
The same year, Alva attended the third United Nations World Conference on Women in Nairobi, and on her return to India, was instrumental in setting up a women’s cell within the Planning Commission (now Niti Aayog) and a number of Ministries.
The name of Alva, who has also been the Governor of Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Goa and Gujarat was decided after Opposition parties met at NCP supremo’s Sharad Pawar residence.
The leaders who attended the Opposition meeting were — Ram Gopal Yadav from Samajwadi Party, Sitaram Yechury from CPI-M, K. Keshava Rao from TRS, AD Singh from RJD, Sanjay Raut from Shiv Sena, Jairam Ramesh and Malikarjun Kharge from Congress, ET Mohammad Bashir from IUML, Vaiko from MDMK, NK Prem Chandran from RSP, TR Balu and Trichishiva from DMK , Tol Thirumavalavan and Ravi Kumar from VCK, D Raja and Binoy Biswam from the CPI, Jose K Mani from the Kerala Congress and Farooq Abdullah from the National Conference.
The last date for nominations for the post of Vice President is July 19 and the polls for the coveted post will be held on August 6.
Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu’s term ends on August 10.
The NDA has fielded West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar for the post.
BJP chief J.P. Nadda announced the name of Dhankhar after the Parliamentary Board meeting at party headquarters on Saturday evening. (IANS)