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NDA Prez Poll Nominee on June 20; BJP Talks to Trinamool, BJD

Marya Shakil | CNN-News18 maryashakil

Updated: June 18, 2017, 6:20 PM IST
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NDA Prez Poll Nominee on June 20; BJP Talks to Trinamool, BJD
In this file photo, BJP president Amit Shah (centre) is seen with Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari (left) and information and broadcasting minister M Venkaiah Naidu.
New Delhi: Things seemed to be heating up for the Presidential elections as Finance Minister Arun Jaitley spoke to the top brass at Trinamool Congress and Biju Janata Dal on Sunday.

With pressure mounting, sources close to BJP told News18 that the BJP Parliamentary board is likely to meet on June 20th and a name could be announced. The NDA nominee is likely to file nomination on the 23rd, keeping it well timed before Prime Minister Narendra Modi leaves for the United States of America on June 24th.

The source added that Samajwadi Party leader Ram Gopal Yadav and Naresh Agarwal met Union minister Venkaiah Naidu and are understood to have communicated that they would want a political person in the Raisina hills. Last week, Rajnath Singh and Venkaiah Naidu had met Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Left Leaders Sitaram Yechury, S.Sudhakar Reddy and D.Raja. Naidu also held a detailed discussion with Sharad Pawar over the phone on Saturday.

ALSO READ: Karnataka Congress to Continue With Dalit President in Build-up to Polls

In a separate development, BJP president Amit Shah on Sunday held a close-door meeting with Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray as part of the ruling party's efforts to ensure support of allies in the Presidential election. According to a source in the Shiv Sena, Shah told Thackeray that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would decide the NDA's candidate for the highest constitutional post.

However, sources in the government said that approaching the opposition parties without a single name might not be appropriate.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj emerged the lead contender to become NDA's candidate to succeed Pranab Mukherjee as the next President of India, three top sources from the BJP and RSS have told News18. Names of Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Jharkhand Governor Draupadi Murmu have also been doing the rounds for the top post.

ALSO READ | President Polls: Shiv Sena's Vote Kitty Could Prove Crucial for BJP
First Published: June 18, 2017, 5:24 PM IST
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