The meeting of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) parliamentary board to decide on the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA) Presidential candidate is likely to take place today.
The candidates would be discussed at the meeting of the board, the governing body of the party, and an announcement is expected soon, sources said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other top leaders of the board will join the meeting, scheduled in the evening. The BJP has already formed a 14-member management team to oversee the election.
BJP president JP Nadda, Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union Minister for Roads Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and party general secretary (organisation) BL Santosh are among the members of the parliamentary board, apart from PM Modi.
The last date for filing nominations for the presidential election is June 29. The polling will take place on July 18 and the votes will be counted on July 21. The term of the current President Ram Nath Kovind ends on July 24 and an election for the next president has to be held before that day.
The BJP may not have the numbers to get the NDA candidate as the next President of India. So, the role of parties like Biju Janata Dal (BJD), and YSRCP will be important.
The presidential election is conducted indirectly through an electoral college consisting of Members of Parliament and legislative assemblies of states and Union Territories. In the electoral college of around 10.86 lakh votes, the BJP-led alliance is estimated to have more than 48 percent share, and is hopeful that non-aligned regional parties will support it, according to news agency PTI.
At least 17 Opposition parties will also meet today to pick their consensus candidate for the Presidential election.Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah and Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson and former diplomat Gopalkrishna Gandhi have already ruled out their names from the presidential race. The names were discussed during the last meeting of Opposition parties called by Trinamool Congress leader and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.