Education minister Dharmendra Pradhan has been appointed the de facto election agent for the yet to be announced NDA candidate for the upcoming presidential polls.

Among some other organisational matters discussed at a meeting held by the BJP top brass on May 2, at party president J. P. Nadda’s residence, and attended by home minister Amit Shah, defence minister Rajnath Singh, roads and highways minister Nitin Gadkari as well as senior leaders like B. L. Santhosh as well RSS joint general secretary Arun Kumar, was the question of shoring up support for the NDA presidential candidate, whoever that might be.

In fact, Mr. Pradhan’s first port of call was Bihar and a hush hush meeting with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. The Janata Dal (U), which Mr. Kumar leads, is an NDA ally and while relations between the two parties are lukewarm at the moment, his support has been actively sought. Mr. Pradhan is likely to meet up leaders of parties allied with the BJP or those which are at least on friendly and neutral terms.


“Five years ago, current minister for environment Bhupendra Yadav had been the election agent for President Ram Nath Kovind. This role is similar to that, except we are still waiting on a nominee”Senior BJP leader

“Five years ago, current minister for environment Bhupendra Yadav had been the election agent for President Ram Nath Kovind. This role is similar to that, except we are still waiting on a nominee,” said a senior party leader.

Polls to elect the President of India are due in July this year and the electoral college for the same is drawn from legislators from State Assemblies and Members of Parliament from both Houses, with each vote being given a certain weightage depending on the population of states.

In total, there are 10.90 lakh votes in the presidential electoral college and as of now, the BJP is leading with a total of 5.42 lakh votes in the NDA kitty, with parties considered neutral and likely to vote with the NDA – the YSRCP and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) together clocking 75,528 votes.

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