Indian Polity: Vice President

Vice President-indian-polity

Article 63: This article states that there shall be a vice President of India.

Article 64: The Vice President shall be the ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

Note: The Vice President is like a counter part of the Speaker of the Lok Sabha.

Article 65: The Vice President shall act as the President in the event of a vacancy in the office of the President by reason of his death, resignation or removal or otherwise.

At the time of acting as the President or discharging the functions of the President the Vice President shall not perform the duties of the Chairman of Rajya Sabha. (Article 64).

Article 66: Qualifications for the election of Vice President

Article 66 (1): The Vice President is elected by an electoral college consisting of the members of the two houses of the Parliament in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote.

A sitting Vice President is eligible for reelection.

Article 67: The term of office of the Vice President is 5 years

The office may be terminated by resignation or removal.

A formal impeachment is not required.

The election to the office of the Vice President has to be completed before the expiration of the term.

Article 68: This article talk about the time of holding the elections to fill vacancy in the office of Vice President and the term of office of the Vice President to fill casual vacancy

Article 69: Oath of the Vice President

Article 70: Discharge of the functions of the President in other contingencies

Article 71: Disputes related to the election of the Vice President can be challenged only in Supreme Court

Election of the Vice President

VP is elected indirectly by the members of an electoral college consisting of the members of both Lok sabha and Rajyasabha. (It includes nominated members also).

Election is held in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote and the voting is by secret ballot.

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Should be a citizen of India.
  • Should have completed 35 years of age.
  • Should not hold any office of profit
  • Should be qualified for election as a member of the Rajya Sabha.

Sitting President or Vice-President of the union, the Governor of any state and a minister of the union or any state is not deemed to hold any office of profit and hence qualified for being a candidate for vice-President.

Nomination for the election must be subscribed by at least 20 electors as proposers and 20 electors as seconders.

Contesting candidate has to make a security deposit of 15,000/-.

OATH:

The oath of office to the VP is administered by the President or some person appointed by him.

TERM: 5 years.

RESIGNATION: Submits the resignation letter to the President of India.

REMOVAL: 14 days advance notice should be given. The Vice President is removed by a resolution of the Rajya Sabha passed by majority of all the then members of the council and agreed to by the House of the People.

The reasons for the removal of the Vice President are not mentioned in the Constitution.

REELECTION: Sitting Vice President can be reelected to the office any number of terms. So far only the first VP of India Dr. S. Radhakrishanan was the only person who got elected to the office of VP for two terms.

Note: The sitting Vice President Hamid Ansari reelected to the office for the second term in the year 2012.

VACANCY:

1.      On the expiry of term 5 years.

2.      By death

3.      By resignation

4.      By removal from the office

5.      Otherwise

In case of vacancy the election must be held as soon as possible. The newly elected VP remains in office for a full term of 5 years from the date of assuming charges.

ELECTION DISPUTES: (Article 71)

The election disputes in relation with election of the Vice-President are enquired into and decided by the Supreme Court. The decision of Supreme Court is final and exclusive.

FUNCTIONS of the Vice-President:

1.      Acts as the ex-officio chairman of Rajya Sabha.

2.      Acts as the President in the absence of the President due to death, resignation, and removal or otherwise.

The Vice-President while acting as the President does not perform the duties of the Chairman of Rajya Sabha.

SALARY AND EMOLUMENTS:

1.      Salary is drawn in the capacity of Chairman of Rajya Sabha.

2.      Draws a salary of 1, 25,000/-.

3.      Entitled to free residence, Daily allowance, medical and other allowances.

4.      While acting as the President of India he is entitled to draw the salary of the President and not that of Chairman of Rajya Sabha.

Important:

In the VP elections that was held in August 2012 a candidate by  name Narendranath Dubey Ajig said to be a resident of Varanasi (UP) faked the signatures of 40 MPs from AP. The matter came to light when the MPs were contacted by the election office to cross-check whether they had extended support. The MPs approached the Lok Sabha Secretary-General and the election office  to appraise them what had transpired. On the complained lodged by an MP Ponnam Prabhakar the Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police registered an FIR on December 13, 2012.