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Ram Nath Kovind sworn in as President, pledges to uphold Constitution

Narendra Modi at the Swearing-In Ceremony of President Ram Nath Kovind at central hall of Parliament

swore in as the 14th of India on Tuesday at Rashtrapati Bhawan in a glittering ceremony.

was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Chief Justice of India J S Khehar. He exchanged seats with and a 21-gun salute followed as the new made his first address.

then addressed the gathering at Central as of India, "I am accepting this position with all humility and I am grateful for this responsibility. I feel privileged to walk on the same path as Dr Ra

Immediately after the oath taking ceremony, Kovind, 71, exchanged the chair with Mukherjee to take over the top constitutional post of India - as the head of the state and supreme commander of the Indian Armed forces.

"My journey from a small village to President's House has been long but interesting. A nation grows only when development for all is ensured. Ham sab ek hain aur ek hi rahenge," he said.

arrived at the forecourt escorted by the Military Secretary to the  had also taken on a tour of the official residence.

Kovind, former Bihar Governor, is the second Dalit of India after K R Narayanan.

The NDA candidate received 65.65 per cent of the votes in the Electoral College and defeating Opposition candidate Meira Kumar. 

The President-elect left for Raj Path with Pranab Mukherjee, who was given a farewell in earlier, reported Lok Sabha TV.

In view of the ceremonial functions, the outgoing along with proceeded to the in a six-horse carriage. Army, Navy and Air Force personnel flanked the Raisina Hill road.

The buggy was brought out for the first time after 1984 by Mukherjee for Beating Retreat ceremony in 2014.

Ramnath Kovind's family members, associates and close friends arrived for the swearing-in at House. Earlier in the day, reached Rajghat and paid tribute to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi along with wife Savita.

The ceremony began at 12.15 pm in the of 

At the Parliament, both were received by Vice-Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Speaker Sumitra Mahajan.

The dais at the was shared by and President-elect, Speaker, Vice and Chief Justice of India.

After the event, outgoing Mukherjee will proceed to his new residence - 10, Rajaji Marg.

was elected the last Thursday as a ruling NDA candidate. He defeated the Opposition parties' nominee Meira Kumar by a huge margin.

Ram Nath Kovind, who served as the 35th Governor of Bihar was born on October 1, 1945 in Paraukh village in the Kanpur Dehat district, Uttar Pradesh. did his graduation in law from a Kanpur college.

Before start his career as a lawyer, cleared the civil services examination but did not join as he was selected for an allied. Mr joined the BJP in 1991. He was of the BJP Dalit Morcha between 1998 and 2002. He also served as Member of Rajya Sabha from 1994 to 2006.

While Mukherjee left for his new address — 10 Rajaji Marg, will reside in the largest residence for any head of state in the world.

will hold the office of for five years, according to Article 56 of the of India.

In the 2017, held on July 17, of the total 4,880 valid voters — 4,109 members of legislative Assemblies (MLAs) and 771 elected members of (MPs) — 99.49 per cent had cast their vote. Of the total 771 MPs who are entitled to vote, 768, or 99.61 per cent, cast their votes. Likewise, of the 4,109 MLAs entitled to vote, 4,083 or 99.37 per cent cast their votes, officials said.

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