Presidential elections 2017: Disunity in opposition indicates Modi’s increasing power, popularity
New Delhi, July 17: No matter how much the Congress tried to show "unity" among the opposition parties, but the deep fissures within them is out in the open on the very important day of the Presidential elections 2017 on Monday.
The disunity among the opposition parties indicated Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ever increasing power and popularity.
While the Bihar's ruling party, Janata Dal (United)--a constituent of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA)--had already expressed its support for the ruling National Democratic Alliance's (NDA) Presidential nominee Ram Nath Kovind, the opposition looked further confused on the crucial voting day.
Take for instance the case of the Samajwadi Party (SP). While former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh and current president of the SP, Akhilesh Yadav and his loyalists stood behind the opposition nominee and former Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar, his disgruntled father and SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav and his brother Shivpal Yadav voted for Kovind.
If that was not enough, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), another key member of the opposition, also gave mixed signals. Initially, the NCP said that Kovind is going to win the polls.
However, minutes later, NCP's Praful Patel said that all the party MPs and MLAs have voted for Kumar. Even senior Left leader and former LS speaker, Somnath Chatterjee, echoed the views of the NCP about Kovind's victory.
"It seems the NDA Presidential candidate will come through. However, happy that vast majority of votes from the West Bengal will go to Kumar," said Chatterjee, one of the tallest leaders from Bengal.
The Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC), which is fighting a fierce battle against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after recent communal attacks in the state, is also not united in its support for Kumar.
According to reports, six TMC MLAs have cross voted in support of Kovind.
Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, "The election to the President of India is a fight for 'idea of India', our ideology and thought."
It looks like Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati too does not mind if Kovind wins, although her party MPs and MLAs are said to have voted for Kumar.
"It does not matter who wins, the President will be from the scheduled caste. It's a huge victory for our movement and the party," said Mayawati.
"Ram Nath Kovind ji will win with a comfortable and respectable margin," said Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu ahead of the polls.