Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind, NDA’s presidential candidate, waves at the media as he leaves for Delhi.
“After discussing with senior party leaders, BJD has chose to support the candidature of Ram Nath Kovind”, Patnaik told reporters after receiving a telephone call from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Sena will take a final decision tomorrow regarding its support to 71-year-old Kovind, who is the governor of Bihar.
The presidential election, is required, will be held on 17 July.
Union Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu insisted that all parties were consulted. Kovind is likely to file his nomination on June 23. With his illustrious background in the legal arena, Shri Kovind’s knowledge and understanding of the Constitution will benefit the nation.
He pointed out that even Nehru’s attempts to make C Rajagopalachari as the first President of India went in vain.
Nitish Kumar expressed his happiness that the Bihar Governor would be the NDA’s candidate for the President elections.
The Sena meeting comes a day after Thackeray accused the BJP of playing Dalit vote-bank politics and of fielding Kovind merely to capture Dalit votes. “He is a Dalit leader and we hope he will continue work for the backward section of the society”, he said. While lauding the prohibition and hailing the Nitish Kumar government for “ensuring good governance in Bihar” Kovind also critiqued the state of higher education in the state.
He said he congratulated Kovind on his nomination.
As to whether the JD-U will support his candidature, Nitish Kumar said: “It is hard to say at this point of time”.
Shah also informed that the BJP leaders have talked to Congress president Sonia Gandhi, who told them that they would hold discussions over the Presidential nominee and proceed further.
However, Sitaran Yechury, general secretary of the Communist Party of India, did not flatly reject the election after stating that the opposition will meet on Thursday to push for a “common position” on the issue.