BJP to project Dr Murli Manohar Joshi as next president of India: Reports

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New Delhi, June 14: BJP has projected its veteran leader Dr Murli Manohar Joshi as the candidate for the next year presidential elections in India.

As per a report published in India Today, 82-yearold Joshi recently held a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and othet senior leaders of the party, in the race to the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Dr Murli Manohar Joshi

On May 22, Joshi had also met PM Modi over dinner at the 7 Race Course Road and held talks in the same context.

After meeting PM, Joshi met Bhagwat at RSS headquarters in Nagpur earlier this month. Since then, he is in constant talks with the BJP and RSS leaders. On June 6 and June 7, he met some RSS leaders in Mumbai.

Sources said that PM Modi and BJP national president Amit Shah have taken this decision, in an attempt to honour Joshi, by nominating him for the country's top post.

If Joshi's candidature is finalised for the country's next president, then this move of the BJP will also help the party in strengthening its position in next year Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. Joshi's nomination can help BJP in fetching Brahmin votes in 2017 Uttar Pradesh assembly  polls.

According to a report published in India.com, other high-profile names that are doing the rounds for India's next president are- parliamentary leader Venkaiah Naidu, Lok Sabha speaker Sumitra Mahajan, Thawar Chand Gehlot, Uttar Pradesh governor Ram Naik, Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan and NCP supremo Sharad Pawar.

The five-year tenure of the incumbent President Pranab Mukherjee comes to an end in 2017.

Joshi nowhere in posters at BJP meet in Allahabad

Once one of the three pillars of the BJP along with Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Lal Krishna Advani, Murali Manohar Joshi is now nowhere on the party's leadership spectrum here at the National Executive meeting.

Joshi, a former party president, was nowhere to be seen on the posters and hoardings here, even in those that feature both Vajpayee and Advani.

BJP sources said Joshi, who represented this city in Parliament for three terms, has been here for two days, but no one from the party has paid him any attention.

After being pushed out from Allahabad, Joshi contested the Lok Sabha election from Varanasi in 2009 and from Kanpur in 2014.

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