The Opposition’s candidate for the vice-president’s post Margaret Alva on Sunday reached out to the chief minister of Delhi Arvind Kejriwal, Assam’s Himanta Biswa Sarma and Karnataka’s Basavraj Bommai to seek support for the upcoming elections.
In the election that will be held on August 6, Alva will face the National Democratic Alliance’s nominee, former West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.
On Sunday, Alva told ANI that she would reach out to the chief ministers of all the states who are supporting her and also those who are not.
“For example, I will talk to Karnataka CM, Assam CM and even Uttar Pradesh CM Adityanath,” she said. “Adityanath, because we have an old relationship with him when he was MP and he is my good friend.”
However, soon after Alva had a conversation with Sarma, the Assam chief minister said he had informed the Opposition’s candidate that he has no role in the election of vice president.
“Smt. Margaret Alva spoke to me this morning,” Sarma wrote in a tweet. “I politely told her that I’m not a member of the electoral college.”
In response, Alva said that she had reached out to Sarma as part of her election campaign, along with other leaders.
“Mr. Sarma is an old friend and we have worked together long enough for him to know that after 30 years in Parliament,” she wrote. “I know what constitutes the electoral college. We had a nice chat though!”
Alva, a Congress leader, had served as the Union minister of state for personnel, public grievances and pensions from 1991 to 1996. She has also served as the governor of Goa, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand.
The electoral college for picking the vice president comprises Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha MPs. Of Parliament’s current strength of 780, the Bharatiya Janata Party alone has 394 MPs, more than the majority mark of 390.