Margaret Alva, the Opposition’s candidate for the upcoming vice-presidential polls on Thursday made an appeal to all MPs to vote without fear or political pressure.

In the election scheduled to be held on August 6, Alva will face the National Democratic Alliance’s nominee, former West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

“The vice president’s election is not just any other election,” Alva said in a video message to the MPs. “It must be seen as a referendum on the manner in which Parliament is being run.”

Alva said Parliament was at a standstill with no communication taking place between its members. “This diminishes Parliament in the eyes of the people,” she said.

The ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament has witnessed disruptions every day, with the Opposition parties staging protests on the matters of inflation and the alleged misuse of law enforcement agencies by the Centre.

In her video message, Alva also said that the vice-presidential elections give an opportunity to members of Parliament to pick someone who will work impartially in the House. “I believe I am that candidate,” she said.

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.