Ram Nath Kovind – All about NDA's presidential candidate

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi sprung a surprise by backing Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind as NDA's candidate for the upcoming presidential election.

A Dalit, Ram Nath Kovind is a senior BJP leader who took over as the Governor of Bihar after NDA assumed power at the Centre in 2014.

Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovind is NDA's presidential candidate

A native of village Paraunkh,Tehsil Derapur, District Kanpur dehat, Kovind is known for working towards empowerment of the marginalised sections of the society.

Born on 1 October 1945, he is an advocate by profession and has practiced in the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court of India.

A former president of the BJP Dalit Morcha (1998-2002) and president of the All-India Koli Samaj, Kovind had also served as a Rajya Sabha member for over a decade and has served as a member of various Parliamentary Committees including Welfare of Scheduled Castes/ Tribes, Parliamentary Committee on Home Affairs,Parliamentary Committee on Law and Justice,  Parliamentary Committee on Petroleum and Natural Gas, Parliamentary Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment, and Chairman of Rajya Sabha House Committee.

BJP spokesperson and general secretary of the BJP in UP are among the other posts held by him during his long and distinguished political career.

Kovind is likely to file his papers on June 23, BJP president Amit Shah said after a nearly two-hour meeting of the BJP Parliamentary Board.

He said political parties had been informed of the NDA's choice.

"I hope all will agree to the name," he said at a press conference.

Undoubtedly, the NDA choice has come as a surprise as reports had suggested that external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj was the front-runner in the race to the Raisina Hill.

Clearly, by naming Kovind, the BJP appears to be working towards for its mission 2019. By installing aDalitt in the Rashtrapati Bhavan, the party hopes that the mandate it got in the recently concluded assembly elections in UP will get further strengthened.

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