To keep unity intact, Opposition may put up VP candidate
The opposition is likely to put up its joint candidate for the vice presidential election and may decide on the name during its strategy meeting in Parliament on July 11.
Sources said that the non-NDA parties are seeking to keep the opposition unity intact and feel that even if it is a losing fight it should not be left uncontested. The vice presidential contest is heavily stacked in favour of the ruling dispensation which has a majority of around 550 votes out of a total of 790 members of both Houses of Parliament, who comprise the electoral college for the vice presidential election.
The electoral college that votes for the vice president, who is also the ex-officio chairman of the Rajya Sabha, consists of 543 elected and 2 nominated members of the Lok Sabha besides 233 elected members and 12 nominated members of Rajya Sabha.
Around 18 non-NDA parties are expected to attend Tuesday's meeting convened by Congress President Sonia Gandhi in Parliament Library. The party's vice chief Rahul Gandhi besides a host of leaders from other parties like the NCP, RJD, Left, TMC, SP, BSP, DMK and other smaller parties are also likely to attend. The parties are also likely to discuss the opposition floor management for the monsoon session of Parliament, which starts on July 17, as it comes in the wake of raids on RJD chief Lalu Prasad.