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Why Ram Nath Kovind As NDA Candidate For Presidential Polls Makes Perfect Sense

Narendra Modi had made it clear to the party brass that the next President would be a dyed-in-the-wool BJP man

Photo Credit : PTI,

In line with springing surprises, the Narendra Modi-Amit Shah duo on Monday finalised the name of Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind as the NDA Presidential candidate.

The name was announced by BJP President Shah after a meeting of the BJP Parliamentary Board.

There were various names doing the rounds for the position – including the likes of Sushma Swaraj and Narendra Jadhav.

Modi had made it clear to the party brass that the next President would be a dyed-in-the-wool BJP man.

Kovind fits into the template neatly. He has had a long association with the BJP / RSS family. He has served as a party’s national spokesperson. He has also served two terms as party MP in the Rajya Sabha.

What has gone in his favour that as a Governor of an Opposition-ruled state, Kovind was absolutely aligned with the Modi-led Centre.

Hailing from Uttar Pradesh, Kovind has in the past also served as BJP SC Morcha president.

The BJP’s decision to field a Dalit is sure to put the combined Opposition in an awkward position. They cannot publically oppose a Dalit candidate who has had a distinguished political career. At the same time, they will have to think twice before making common cause with a BJP nominee.

By fielding Kovind as their presidential nominee, the BJP has also sought to assuage the hurt Dalit feelings, especially in Uttar Pradesh.

After the coming of Yogi Adityanath government in UP, there has been a spate of attacks on Dalits in the states, and skirmishes reported between various Dalit groups and the state administration. As the party’s Dalit face from the state, this will go a long way in calming the frayed nerves, say party leaders.

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