NCP chief Sharad Pawar, whose name has been floated by some of the opposition parties for the upcoming presidential elections, on Thursday said that the BJP and its allies appear to be on a strong wicket for electing the successor of President Pranab Mukherjee.
“The position of the ruling party (BJP) and its allies appears strong in the presidential polls. And if (non-NDA) parties like TRS, AIADMK and DMK support them, their position will become even stronger,” news agency PTI’s sources in NCP quoted Sharad Pawar as saying at a meeting of the state unit of the party in Mumbai.
President Pranab Mukherjee’s term is to expire on July 24, 2017 and the election for the top constitutional post is to be held before that.
The president is elected by an electoral college, comprising the elected members of the Lok Sabha, the Rajya Sabha and the legislative assemblies of every state and Union Territory.
The TRS has already announced it will support the NDA candidate in the polls if it helped Telangana, where the regional party is in power.
Referring to Maharashtra BJP president Raosaheb Danve’s comments against farmers, the former Union agriculture minister said the Opposition will benefit if he continues to hold the post.
The former Maharashtra chief minister said there was no need to demand Danve’s resignation. Pawar asked his party leaders and workers to hit the streets and highlight issues of public interest. He said the Shiv Sena and the BJP have started preparations for the 2019 polls, but the NCP is lagging behind on this front.
“The Shiv Sena is touring the entire state. The BJP has started preparations for polls, but we remain complacent. The (BJP-led) government has completed half its term, but we continue to be in ‘power’ mindset. This must change. It’s important to take to the streets now and highlight the problems being faced by the people,” the Maratha strongman said.
(With PTI inputs)