New Delhi: At a time when political parties are yet to reach a consensus over a suitable Presidential candidate, Odisha Chief Minister and Biju Janta Dal (BJD) Naveen Patnaik on Thursday nominated former Lok Sabha Speaker PA Sangma’s name for the highest constitutional post.
Speaking to reporters, Odisha Chief Minister said, “We will support PA Sangma for the President’s post.”
The BJD chief also claimed that AIADMK led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has also pledged support to Sangma’s name for the President’s post.
The announcement from the BJD chief comes nearly a week after he met AIADMK chief in Chennai.
The announcement holds significance as Sangma will be the first person from the tribal region to become President if political parties arrive at a consensus over his candidature.
With only few weeks remaining for the installation of the new president, all top political parties have begun consultations hoping to evolve a consensus on a common name.
Former president APJ Abdul Kalam, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, Congress veteran Pranab Mukherjee and Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav are among the top candidates in the race to become the next head of the state.
The Congress is backing Hamid Ansari, currently the Vice-President. RJD chief Lalu Prasad has also come out in Ansari`s support.
The Opposition BJP has proposed the name of nuclear scientist APJ Abdul Kalam, who served as President from 2002 to 2007 but did not stand for re-election when his term expired.
The BJP sees the presidential election as a chance to challenge the government`s strength.
The President is elected by members of the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and all state legislatures or Vidhan Sabhas by a system of proportional representation through single transferable vote.
The ballot paper lists all candidates standing for election and the voters list them in order of preference. A threshold number of votes, known as the `quota` is set, which candidates have to achieve to be elected. For presidential elections, the quota is set at one more than half the number of votes.