On 21/6/2022 soon after 2.30 p.m. Opposition parties decided Yashwant Sinha as their candidate for President. He was fourth choice. Sharad Pawar, Farooq Abdullah and Gopalkrishna had declined to contest. He had to give up TMC membership as Congress and Left Front were not ready to support a TMC member.
At around 9.29 p.m. BJP President Jagat Prakash Nadda announced Draupadi Murmu as BJP candidate for President. BJP’s Parliamentary Board had considered 20 names and settled on Draupadi. She was chosen because she was from east, a tribal and a woman. Vice President Venkaiah Naidu was not chosen. In 2007 Bhairon Singh Shekhawat had resigned as Vice President on 21/7/2007 following defeat to Pratibha Patil in Presidential election. Venkaiah Naidu has the option to resign before swearing-in of next President.
Names of Arif Mohammed Khan, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Tamilisai Soundararajan, Tawar Chand Gehlot were doing rounds. One of them may become Vice President.
Some talk as if Draupadi’s victory is assured as BJD and JD(U) have assured support. There is many a slip between the cup and the lip. In 2015, Kiran Bedi was made CM candidate in Delhi election by BJP. It was considered a masterstroke by master strategist Amit Shah. Kiran Bedi contested from a safe seat held by Harsh Vardhan. She lost. AAP won 67 seats out of 70, BJP 3.
On 20/6/2022 there was voting for Maharashtra Legislative Council members by MLAs. Congress with 44 MLAs had fielded two candidates. Chandrakant Handore, a Dalit, was the first candidate. He was to get 29 Congress votes. Bhai Jagtap was the second candidate. He was to get 15 Congress votes. Rest of the votes he was to get from allies. Two MLAs cross-voted. Five votes meant for Handore went to Jagtap. Handore lost.
Many BJP electors feel discarded, humiliated, insulted and wronged. Many of them were ministers who were dropped. In Gujarat all ministers were dropped. New ministers came in. Babul Supriyo was open about his disappointment. He left BJP, joined TMC and became MLA. Shatrughan Sinha as TMC candidate won Asansol Lok Sabha seat vacated by Babul Supriyo. For BJP members who want revenge it is payback time. They can cross-vote, vote invalidly or not vote. Voting is on 18/7/2022, counting is on 21/7/2022.
It is not over till it is over.