Amaravati/New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday called up AP Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu to formally seek support for Ram Nath Kovind, who has been chosen NDA presidential candidate.
He also asked Naidu to help reach out to non-NDA parties, including TMC’s West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on the issue.
After the BJP parliamentary party meeting on Monday afternoon, Modi called Naidu over phone to inform him about the name of NDA’s presidential candidate.
Chandrababu positively responded and said he would consult Mamata Banerjee after she returned from her foreign trip. Mamata 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.
Naidu is among the handful of parties from the South which had committed to support the NDA candidate. Besides Naidu’s TDP, Tamil Nadu’s ruling AIADMK and Telangana’s ruling TRS had agreed to support Modi’s choice.
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. Kovind, who is currently the Bihar Governor, belongs to the Dalit community.
Naidu’s office said he had praised Modi’s choice. “Kovind is an “intellectual from the Dalit community and deserves the position of president,” He said, extending his party TDP’s support to the NDA’s candidate for President.
Via Hans India