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17 July 2017, 05:22 | Erica Roy
Independents flock to support Ram Nath Kovind
The election is held today as the President Pranab Mukherjee's post is expiring on July 25.
But the promised support from the BJD, the TRS and the YSR Congress and likely backing from the AIADMK factions could offset the shortfall of the presidential votes by a substantial margin.
Kushwaha Shivpujan Mehta of BSP and Anosh Ekka of Jharkhand Party also cast their votes but did not reveal for whom they had voted. "However, it is a matter of satisfaction and pride that the election campaign has been a dignified one". Ramnath Kovind is a leader and politician of BJP and he was nominated for Presidential election. "This session gives the country an opportunity to elect the president and the vice president".
Dalits, who number around 200 million in the nation of 1.3 billion, form a sizeable chunk of the population in some states which go to polls this year and early next year. On the other hand, his rival Meira Kumar, jointly fielded by 17-member Opposition bloc, is expected to secure 35.4 per cent of the votes. Even YSRCP Chief YS Jagan Mohan Reddy too said that he is supporting NDA's candidate. On another, Congress is sure of its candidate Meira Kumar and her their best choice. The PM also asked NDA MPs to reach out to the "new millennial voters", those born in 2000 and after, and said they should be welcomed and made aware of their responsibilities.
Kovind's opponent, Kumar, is the daughter of freedom fighter Babu Jagjivan Ram.
Ahead of voting, UPA chairperson and Congress president Sonia Gandhi said the presidential election demands a "vote of conscience" as it represents a clash of ideas and conflict of disparate values. It is very important that "we protect and preserve it", she said.
The Election Commission appointed 33 observers to oversee the election. Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has also voted in the UP Assembly. "We all have the duty to preserve the importance of the Constitution of India".
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