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For Presidential Polls, Chandrababu Naidu Gets A Tricky Task From PM Modi

NDTV logo NDTV 19-06-2017 Edited by Anindita Sanyal
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(Video provided by the Times of India)

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today dialed Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu to formally seek support for Ramnath Kovind, who has been chosen he presidential candidate of the NDA. He also asked Mr Naidu to help reach out to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on the issue.  

Ms Banerjee -- who left this morning for a three-day trip to The Hague, the Netherlands - is one of the opposition leaders who said they could not commit to support the NDA candidate without knowing who it would be.

ALSO READ: Bihar governor and Dalit leader Ram Nath Kovind is NDA’s presidential candidate

Soon after the announcement, senior Trinamool Congress leader Derek O'Brien tweeted:

While announcing Mr Kovind's selection, the BJP had said Union Minister Arun Jaitley, who had earlier spoken to the Trinamool chief, will get in touch with her again.

Mr Naidu is among the handful of parties from the South which had committed to support the NDA candidate. Besides Mr Naidu's TDP, Tamil Nadu's ruling AIADMK and Telangana's ruling TRS had agreed to support PM Modi's choice.

ALSO READ: Who is Ram Nath Kovind?

The BJP is also seen as expecting support from Bihar - both from Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal United and Lalu Yadav's RJD. Both parties are pro-Dalit and backward castes. Mr Kovind, who is currently the Bihar Governor, belongs to the Dalit community.

IN PICS: Know five facts about Ram Nath Kovind

Ram Nath Kovind: Know five facts about him: Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind has been nominated by the Bhartiya Janata Party as their nominee for the Presidential elections. The announcement was made on Monday afternoon. Express Photo by Kamleshwar Singh Ram Nath Kovind: Know five facts about him

(Provided by the Indian Express)

After the Bihar Governor was picked for the top job at a meeting of the parliamentary party - the BJP's top decision making body - the Prime Minister has spoken to a number of opposition leaders. Among them were Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.  

Mr Naidu's office said he praised PM Modi's choice. Mr Kovind, he said, is an "intellectual from the Dalit community and deserves the position of president".

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