Former diplomat, governor, Gopalkrishna Gandhi has been approached for the presidential candidate 2017 by the opposition. Talks are still ongoing about other candidates, however, Gandhi, whose paternal grandfather is Mahatma Gandhi, is a front-runner. Gopalkrishna has confirmed that he has been approached, but denied to reveal any further details.
Gopalkrishna told the Indian Express that he had been approached, but the discussion was at initial level. However, a large consensus may form over his name as the presidential candidate. Many parties, including TMC, are okay with his candidature.
Other names that are doing rounds as opposition’s joint candidate include JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav, NCP’s Sharad Pawar, and Congress party’s Meira Kumar’s. However, two names are being highly considered – Meira Kumar and Gopalkrishna Gandhi.
But then, opposition might have no role to play in this presidential election, if BJP manages to convince few neutral parties.
Significantly, in the presidential election 2017, AIADMK, BJD and Shiv Sena will play a decisive role. The number of votes required to win the election is 549442. And even if the BJP managed to garner the entire votes of Independents across the nation, it will still be short of very few votes.
Thus, the role of parties like AIADMK, Shiv Sena and BJD is significant. The AIADMK has around 59,000 votes, Shiv Sena has about 25893 and BJD has around 36500 respectively.
If BJP manages to win these parties, there will be no significance of the candidates put up by the oppositions. Notably, these parties have supported many bills of the NDA government in the last three years. However, things have changed in the recent months.
With data inputs from Neeraj.