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Presidential Elections 2017: Mahatma Gandhi's grandson Gopalkrishna Gandhi‬ to be Opposition's candidate?

The Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance is almost certain to nominate Jharkhand Governor Draupadi Murmu for the top post.


Presidential Elections 2017: Mahatma Gandhi's grandson Gopalkrishna Gandhi‬ to be Opposition's candidate?

New Delhi: Gopalkrishna Gandhi, the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, could be fielded as the joint Opposition candidate in the upcoming Presidential Elections.

Talking to The Indian Express, the former governor of West Bengal on Wednesday said: “Yes, I have been spoken to. But the conversations have been of a very preliminary nature. It would not be right for me to say anything beyond that.”

Both Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury have reportedly spoken with the former diplomat in this regard. Gopalkrishna Gandhi has also the backing of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

The Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance is almost certain to nominate Jharkhand Governor Draupadi Murmu for the top post.

The daily has quoted sources in the Opposition as saying that former Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar is also in the fray.

However, a number of Opposition parties are not favouring a Congress nominee as the presidential candidate.

Profile of Gopalkrishna Gandhi

- Gopalkrishna Gandhi is one of the four children of Mahatma Gandhi’s youngest son Devdas Gandhi. His maternal grandfather is the freedom fighter and last Governor General of India C Rajagopalachari.

- Born on April 22, 1945, Gopalkrishna Gandhi did his Masters in English Literature from St Stephen's College, Delhi University. He joined the Indian Administrative Service in 1968 and served in different capacities in Tamil Nadu. He was Secretary to the Vice President of India from 1985 to 1987 and Joint Secretary to the President of India from 1987 to 1992.

- Gandhi opted for voluntary retirement from the IAS in 1992 and then served as Minister (Culture) in the High Commission of India, UK, and Director, The Nehru Centre, London.

- He was appointed as the High Commissioner for India in South Africa in 1996 and concurrently accredited as the High Commissioner for India in Lesotho. He took up the position of the Secretary to the President of India in 1997.

- He was appointed as the High Commissioner for India in Sri Lanka in 2000 and the Ambassador of India to Norway in 2002. He was concurrently accredited as the Ambassador of India in Iceland.

- Gandhi took over as the Governor of West Bengal on December 14, 2004. He was the Governor of Bihar (Additional Charge) from 31-01-2006 to 21-06-2006.

- He has authored one novel (Saranam "Refuge" in English) and a play in verse (Dara Shukoh).

- Married with Tara Gandhi, the couple has two daughters.

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