Who is best? Meira or Kovind?

Laura Christensen
July 18, 2017

NCP chief Sharad Pawar himself declared the party's support for Meira Kumar. BJP are very confident that there presidential candidate Ram Nath Kovind will win the election.

Praful Patel, had been reacting to the reports by a private news channel.

Kovind, who belongs to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), has the backing of all the party's allies besides several regional parties, while Kumar has been fielded by the Congress and some major opposition parties in what they call an "ideological battle" against the ruling party.

The BJP party workers were seen chatting Hindu mantras (sacred words) in front of a fire to pray for Kovind's victory.

The voting for electing the next President of India is all set to happen on Monday.

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Former Lok Sabha speaker Meira is backed by the Congress and 17 opposition parties, including the Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, NCP, AAP and the Trinamool Congress.

Kovind's meeting with BJD legislators and MPs was considered as a mere formality as Patnaik had already announced his party's support to the NDA nominee describing him as a "distinguished dalit leader". As of 2017, the electoral college comprises 776 MPs (Members of Parliament) and 4120 MLAs (Members of Legislative Assembly).

On the other hand, 124 legislators of the 126-member Assam assembly and three MPs of All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) had cast their votes in the Assam assembly on Monday. Ahead of the polling, Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu said, "Kovind ji will win (the election) with a respectable and comfortable margin". The counting of votes will be on July 20 at 11 AM.

Polling to choose the successor of incumbent Pranab Mukherjee, who demits office on July 25, started simultaneously in Parliament in the national capital and state assemblies at 10 a.m.

Narendra Modi, India's prime minister was among the first to cast his vote at a booth in Parliament. With this, Kovind has been assured support of these MLAs, including 161 of BJP.

The BJP's unapologetic flaunting of Kovind's Dalit identity also helped bring many non-NDA players to its side.

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