Former Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind is India’s new president and will serve the nation with this post for next 5 years. He was BJP led NDA’s presidential candidate and won with over 7 Lakhs votes against UPA’s candidate Meira Kumar on Thursday. A lawyer by profession, Kovind is a low profile Dalit BJP leader from Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh.
BJP President Amit Shah announced his name as the party’s choice as presidential candidate saying, ” Ram Nath comes from a Dalit family and has struggled a lot. We hope he will be the unanimous candidate for the election.” In the fragile political environment where BJP is highly accused of suppressing minorities, especially Dalits, their decision to select a Dalit candidate with clean image is speculated as a foreseen agenda to acquire Dalit vote share, eyeing 2019 elections.
And here are a few facts about newly elected President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind that every Indian citizen should know.
– He is 71 years old and was born in a Dalit family on October 1, 1945 in Paraunkh village of Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh.
– A lawyer by profession, Kovind served in Delhi High Court and Supreme Court for 16 years. He is a B.Comm graduate and LLB from Kanpur University.
– He is married to Savita Kovind and has 2 children – a son and a daughter.
– Kovind has a long political career behind him. He first stepped into mainstream politics when he was elected as a Rajya Sabha member from Uttar Pradesh and served for 2 consecutive terms for 12 years till March, 2006.
– Ram Nath Kovind is also a long time associate of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and thus is an astute choice by the saffron party. He also shares as a great relationship with PM Narendra Modi since more than 2 decades.
– He is renowned for his work in the field of education. He emphasised on development of basic infrastructure for education in villages and helped in construction of school building in Uttarakhand and UP. Mr. Kovind has served as a member of Board of Management of Dr. BR Ambedkar University, Lucknow and was also a member of Board of Governors of IIM, Kolkata.
– Shri Ram Nath Kovind has also represented India in the United Nations and addressed the General Assembly in October 2002.
– He served as a PA to former PM Morarji Desai from 1977 to 1979.
– He has a massive Dalit outreach and has extensively worked for providing free legal aid to weaker sections of the society, especially SC/ST women. He also headed BJP Dalit Morcha (1998 to 2002).