Presidential Election 2017: Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena on Tuesday announced its support for Ram Nath Kovind, the NDA picked candidate in the Presidential Elections 2017. Speaking to media, Shiv Sena Chief Uddhav Thackeray said that his party has decided to support Kovind’s candidature and all the lawmakers will vote for him in the upcoming elections. “As I had said earlier, our party leaders met today, and decided to extend support to Ram Nath Kovind,” Thackeray said. “Amit Shah had called me yesterday and told that BJP has decided to field Ram Nath Kovind for the election, and all the alliance partners of NDA are with them. We met today and decided that all our lawmakers will vote in Kovind’s favour,” Uddhav said. Earlier, Sena had on Monday said that it will announce its decision on Tuesday. “If the name of Kovind is being put forward with a view to garner dalit votes then the Sena is not interested.”
Sena has never indulged in the politics of hiding behind someone. We shall decide on whether or not to support the candidature of Kovind tomorrow,” Thackeray had said. Earlier, Sena had rooted for the candidature of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on Hindutva line and later proposed the name of veteran agriculturist M S Swaminathan for the top post.
“We had suggested two names for the post. One was of (RSS chief) Mohan Bhagwat. If they (BJP) had a problem with that, we wanted (eminent agriculturist) M S Swaminathan. But since they have chosen some other name, the party will convey to the BJP our decision soon,” senior Shiv Sena leader Raut had told media on Tuesday.