The candidature of Yashwant Sinha for the Presidential poll has more or less united the opposition but the balance is tilting towards NDA candidate Draupadi Murmu after the recent political developments in Maharashtra.
The strategy of the Sinha camp is to focus on personality rather than electoral arithmetic so he is invoking his long experience as an asset against the NDA nominee. Both have launched their campaign and are touring the states.
Sinha said, “This will be my last electoral battle. I fought many electoral battles in my life and this is my last battle and I am very happy that I am signing off my electoral career by competing for the topmost constitutional post in the country.”
Sinha was in Telangana on Saturday where the TRS has offered its support to him. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has invoked the personality factor and said, “We are lucky to have selected a good leader for the Presidential election. I appeal to all Parliamentarians to compare both the candidates and select Sinhaji as we need to bring in a change in Indian politics.”
Sinha, who has been critical of the Modi government, says that he will not be a mere rubber stamp President but will work to protect the Constitution.
But as of now the ruling party is comfortably placed with the Shiv Sena breakaway faction and support of the BJD and the YSRCP.
The NDA Presidential poll nominee Draupadi Murmu is on the campaign trail too and is reaching out to parties headed by OBC leaders or tribals other than the NDA.
All allies of the NDA, including JD(U) chief Nitish Kumar are unitedly supporting the BJP choice.
Besides, leaders of two other political parties, the Biju Janata Dal and the YSRCP, (the ruling parties in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh respectively) signed on the nomination papers of Draupadi Murmu, further cementing her chance to win.
BSP chief Mayawati has extended her support to Murmu, saying tribals form an integral part of the party’s movement.
The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, which is in power in Jharkhand in alliance with the Congress, is also under pressure to support the NDA presidential candidate as Murmu had been the governor of the state.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is said to be having second thoughts as she said that she could have considered supporting NDA’s Presidential candidate Draupadi Murmu had the BJP informed her about its choice in advance.
“Draupadi Murmu has a better chance of winning. Had the BJP informed me in advance that it will field a tribal woman as its Presidential candidate, I could have thought otherwise and made attempts accordingly. For the larger national interest, the opposition parties could have discussed the issue then.”
Murmu is likely to get more support from the opposition ranks keeping in view the changing political scenario and the upcoming assembly elections in the country. Some parties may be forced to support her due to political compulsions.
(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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