Why NDA chose Bihar Governor Kovind, a Dalit leader, as President nominee

Kovind’s name was a surprise to those who wanted somebody with a Hindutva image to be the candidate

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Today’s Paper : Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind, a Dalit leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), will be the presidential candidate of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), and in all likelihood the next President of India.

Presidential Elections 2017 : BJP Parliamentary Board decided Kovind’s candidature at its meeting on Monday. Kovind is widely respected among political circles for his integrity and people remember his family to have led an abstemious lifestyle during his political career, including when he was a Rajya Sabha member from 1994 to 2006.

The BJP-led NDA has 48.6 per cent votes in the electoral college and has been promised support from regional parties like the Telangana Rashtra Samiti, YSR Congress Party, and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.

BJP chief Amit Shah said his party has informed Opposition parties, including the Congress, about its decision. He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has spoken with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Manmohan Singh regarding the matter too. Shah expressed hope that other parties will support the NDA candidate. Kovind’s name was a surprise to most, including those within the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) who had been insisting that somebody with a Hindutva image be the NDA candidate. In the choice of Kovind, Modi and Shah seem to have outmanoeuvred not just the Opposition but also convinced the RSS leadership.

Who is Ram Nath Kovind

Kovind was born in village Paraunkh in district Kanpur Dehat, Uttar Pradesh, on October 1, 1945. He earned his Bachelor of Commerce degree, followed by his LLB degree, from Kanpur’s BNSD Intercollege and DAV College.

Kovind was the general secretary of the All India Koli Samaj from 1971 to 1975. He was the Union government advocate in the Delhi High Court from 1977 to 1979 and the central government advocate in Delhi High Court from 1982 to 1984. He was the general secretary of the Depressed Classes Legal Aid Bureau. | READMORE…

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