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Presidential elections 2022: Rajnath speaks to Kharge, Mamata, Akhilesh on consensus candidate

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New Delhi, Jun 15: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Rajnath Singh speaking to a number of key opposition leaders including Mallikarjun Kharge, Mamata Banerjee and Akhilesh Yadav in a bid to evolve a consensus name for the presidential polls.

Rajnath Singh

The BJP has tasked Singh and party's chief J P Nadda to consult with other parties for building consensus on a presidential candidate.

Singh made the calls to Kharge, Banerjee and Yadav besides some other leaders on a day when leaders of 17 opposition parties met here to build a consensus on a joint opposition candidate.

Singh has also called Janata Dal (United) leader and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) supremo and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to deliberate upon the presidential polls, according PTI report.

Reportedly, the opposition leaders asked Singh about BJP-led NDA's nominee for the presidential election.

During the meeting convened by Banerjee, at least two more names emerged -- National Conference( NC) supremo Farooq Abdullah and Gopalkrishna Gandhi, after Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar declined to be a candidate.

The decision of some key regional parties like the Biju Janata Dal, Telangana Rashtra Samithi and Aam Aadmi Party to skip a key opposition meet called by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on the presidential poll has cheered the ruling BJP as it believes that their absence has only highlighted the faultlines and one-upmanship among its rivals.

The National Democratic Alliance, which already has over 48 per cent of the vote share in the electoral college for choosing the new President, is hopeful of support from the BJD and also the YSR Congress, which is in power in Andhra Pradesh and has sizeable numbers in Parliament as well.

The election for the president will be held on July 18, while the nomination process began from Wednesday. Incumbent Ram Nath Kovind's term ends on July 24.

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