After a thumping victory, President-elect Ram Nath Kovind will be the next occupant of the 2,00,000-sq ft sprawling Rashtrapati Bhavan with 340 rooms.
Born and raised a farmer in a village near Kanpur, UP back in 1945, Kovind studied to become an advocate. Here are 10 things that you probably didn’t know about your soon to be President.
After graduating in law from a Kanpur college, Kovind went to Delhi to prepare for the civil services examination. He passed this exam on his third attempt, but he did not join as he was selected for an allied service instead of IAS.
2. Practising Law
After giving up on his dream of becoming an IAS, he returned to what he studied for in his college. In 1971, he got himself enrolled as an advocate with the Bar Council in the capital.
3. A Helping Hand
As an advocate he provided free legal aid to weaker sections of society, women and the poor under the Free Legal Aid Society in New Delhi
4. Central Government Advocate in Delhi HC
His first noticeable achievement was in 1977 when he was appointed as the Central Government Advocate in Delhi High Court. He served there for two years.
5. Central Government Standing Counsel in SC
Life took another turn for him in 1980. He was now directed to represent the Government as the Central Government Standing Counsel in the Supreme Court of India. Kovind served here for thirteen long years.
6. Secretary to the PM
This may come as a surprise to many but the President designate of India in 2017 had served as the personal secretary to former Indian PM Morarji Desai for a year (1977-78). This offered him an opportunity to follow the proceedings of PMO closely.
7. Political History
He joined the BJP in 1991. He was President of the BJP Dalit Morcha between 1998 and 2002 and President of the All-India Koli Samaj. He also served as national spokesperson for the party. He donated his ancestral home in Derapur to the RSS. He contested from Ghatampur and Bhognipur (both in Uttar Pradesh) assembly constituencies on the BJP ticket but lost both elections.
8. Rajya Sabha MP
Being a nominated member of parliament in the Rajya Sabha was a great feat for him. His time as an MP exposed him to the functioning of the Parliament. He also served as a member of several important parliamentary committees including the likes of Welfare of SC/ST and Social Justice and Empowerment.
9. United Nations
While Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister of India, Ramnath Kovind had an opportunity to represent the country at an international stage. He represented the country at United Nations in New York and also addressed the United Nations General Assembly in October 2002.
10. Governor of Bihar
71-year-old Ramnath Kovind is currently serving as the Governor of Bihar.