After keeping everyone guessing Shiv Sena has finally decided to back NDA's pick for President, Ram Nath Kovind. Party Chief Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday confirmed the party's decision to back Kovind as the next President of India.
With Shiv Sena's assured support, the BJP can now breath easy. The BJP has finally managed to bring its ally Shiv Sena that had been playing hardball on board as far as the Presidential elections are concerned. The Shiv Sena had on Monday created flutter after its chief Uddhav Thackeray said that the party would not support Kovind if NDA had chosen him to merely tap into the Dalit vote bank.
"We will support Ram Nath Kovind but we do not want any kind of politics on it. The opposition is playing caste politics over this," said Uddhav Thackeray as he confirmed the Shiv Sena's support to Kovind's election as the President of India. With a total vote pool of 25,893 in the electoral college, the Shiv Sena is a major player. The party's decision to back the NDA candidate comes as great relief to the BJP. Especially at a time when the opposition has said that it would also field a candidate.
From Mohan Bhagwat to MS Swaminathan, the Shiv Sena had been endorsing candidates for the post, however, BJP's announcement of Kovind as their candidate came as a shock to many. On Monday, Thackeray had said that the party had endorsed Swaminathan for the benefit of farmers.