President election: Nitish Kumar meets Sonia Gandhi, wants united Opposition candidate

CPM has already decided after a thorough discussion in their Politburo that if there is a common Presidential candidate from the Opposition, they would extend support.

Written by Anand Mishra , Manoj CG | New Delhi | Published:April 21, 2017 6:17 am
Bihar CM Nitish Kumar leaves 10, Janpath after meeting Sonia Gandhi. Express Photo by Prem Nath Pandey

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday held a hurriedly-scheduled meeting with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and the two are learnt to have discussed the issue of putting up a common nominee for the Presidential polls in July. Nitish is learnt to have spoken to CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury over the phone on the same issue.

Sources said the meeting between Nitish and Sonia took place on the invitation of the Congress president. The Bihar CM, after arriving in the national capital on Thursday, first went to the residence of INLD chief Om Prakash Chautala in the morning. Late in the afternoon, he drove to Sonia’s 10, Janpath, residence where the two leaders spoke for around half-an-hour.

Though there was no official word on it, sources said Nitish told Sonia that she should think of a common candidate for the Presidential election and assured her of his party’s support.

CPM has already decided after a thorough discussion in their Politburo that if there is a common Presidential candidate from the Opposition, they would extend support.

Sources in the CPM said it would prefer somebody who is not a leader of any particular party so that there can be “widest possible unity”. But at the same time, the candidate should be a “firm secular person”. “The idea is to find somebody on whose name all of us can unite,” a senior CPM leader said.

The issue was also discussed at a meeting between the top leadership of CPM and CPI here on Thursday.

“We thought there can be some common candidate. If suggestions come, Left parties will also participate in the discussion. The preliminary idea is whether all of us can come together. So if we come to an understanding that we can fight together, some names will be discussed. I do not think it is going to be very difficult. We can find somebody maybe among the political leaders.We can discuss the names of some secular democratic personalities,” CPI general secretary S Sudhakar Reddy said.

He added: “From the Left, we do not have any candidate at the moment.”

JD(U) general secretary K C Tyagi refused to divulge much regarding the Nitish-Sonia meeting, saying that he was not present, but reiterated the party’s stand that it strongly favours that Opposition parties put up a common Presidential nominee to contest against NDA’s candidate.

“We are sticking to our stand. A common Presidential nominee by Opposition parties will be the touchstone of the larger Opposition unity against BJP. Congress being the largest party should take the lead in the matter,” Tyagi told The Indian Express.

The JD(U) leader hastened to add that there was no reference to any name in the Nitish-Sonia meeting. He said the discussion focused on how “all opposition parties have to work together with a common goal against the BJP.”

NCP on Tuesday ruled out Sharad Pawar being in the contest for Presidential elections, while sources in JD(U) have downplayed speculation of Sharad Yadav being in the fray.

Nitish had first broached the idea of non-NDA parties propping up a common Presidential candidate in February when he held meetings with Yechury and Reddy in the national capital. He had also shared his “concern” with leaders of NCP, CPM, CPI and INLD over the possibility of BJP propping up “somebody with RSS background” for the post.

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  1. D
    Dr Premanidhi Panda
    Jun 18, 2017 at 6:27 am
    Cover Note in bent Candidate Democratic Country for “President of the India” DR P N PANDA,M.D(MED),MRCP,FRCP,WEB:-drpandadiabetes Cover Note in bent Candidate Democratic Country for “President of the India” Respected Sir/Madam, I am an international National Well Name and Fame in the Field of Diabetes and obesity wants to put forth Myself as Candidate for “Presidential Post” of India. I am no way Inferior to anybody for this Post. I am putting my candidature for this Post as because:- (1)Truth is My sword. (2)Non-Violence for the people of India. (3) ALL WILL BE EDUCATED.EDUCATION WILL BE THE CRITERIA FOR ENTERING INTO POLITICS AND ALL JOBS. (4) ANYBODY 0-200 YEARS MISBEHAVE IN THE FORM. OF RAPE MURDER TO ANY LADY(PARTICULARLY LESS THAN 15YEARS GIRL) .WILL BE SHOOT AT THE SIGHT FIRST. (5) POLICE SYSTEM WILL BE CHANGED.NO THEFT,RAPE AND MURDER. (6) “BHAICHARA” WILL BE THERE WITHOUT HURTING WILL BE OUR MOTTO. (7) I WILL FOLLOW "KATILYA SASTRA" JAI HIND- REQUESTED TO ALL PARTY
    Reply
    1. C
      Chander Pal
      Apr 22, 2017 at 6:40 am
      How about the deputy cm of Bihar as the candidate, secularly qualified up to cl nine, appreciates infra structure as fodder, confidence in dynasty, if can give high decibel anti Hindu speaches will get support from TMC. Neither understands nor is bothered about those confusing phrases like job creation, industrial development etc.
      Reply
      1. Y
        yousef
        Apr 21, 2017 at 1:28 pm
        Nitih, Chautala, Lalu, Sonia candidate must be defeated. Corruption sponsored candidate must be defeated.
        Reply
        1. P
          Pawar RS
          Apr 21, 2017 at 1:16 pm
          Nitoo just propose Laloo's name your father !!
          Reply
          1. P
            Pradeep Phadke
            Apr 21, 2017 at 12:54 pm
            This so called secular alliance will put up a non-en y, Communist for election of President. Only fools can vote such candidate. But then the opposition is full of fools only! Win of NDA candidate is certain!
            Reply
            1. S
              SubbuI
              Apr 21, 2017 at 12:19 pm
              We want a secular minded intellectual to become PRESEDENT not the likes of RSS Bagawath
              Reply
              1. K
                Kg
                Apr 21, 2017 at 12:07 pm
                Only one regional external party's support is required to elect the President of NDA choice, they will manage it.
                Reply
                1. P
                  PARKASH CHANDRA
                  Apr 21, 2017 at 12:02 pm
                  Does this speak respect to a democrat? Have disrespected me? Without Prejudice
                  Reply
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