It was a difficult task for the NDA to choose a suitable candidate for the post of President of India as per the expectations set by different parties. Many names played the round for the possible candidate like Sushma Swaraj, LK Advani, Rajnath Singh, TC Gehlot, M Venkaiah Naidu Draupadi Murmu, MM Joshi, Mohan Bhagwat, MS Swaminathan but the perfect candidate to meet all expectation according to NDA is Ram Nath Kovind.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah had to ensure that a broad consensus emerged on their choice. RSS had set the contours that whoever be the chosen candidate he should be a Dalit, or a Tribal, must have a saffron hue, should be a senior well-read politician and non-controversial. Kovind was the only person who could fit the set standards according to Modi and Shah.
Another reason for choosing Kovind as the candidate is that he is a Dalit leader, and it will be difficult for the opposition parties to oppose a dalit, unless it proposes a dalit candidate against Kovind.
After Shah announced Ram Nath Kovind as the candidate, the board endorsed his name. Both Modi and Shah felt political parties should be informed about the decision and should not come to know about the candidate through the media.
Modi called up UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and former PM Manmohan Singh and sought their support. He also dialed BJD chief Naveen Patnaik, who said he will revert back after talking to his party. Bihar CM Nitish Kumar expressed happiness that the governor of his state has been chosen. Finance minister Arun Jaitley also spoke to Kumar. Modi also spoke to SAD chief Parkash Singh Badal, Telangana CM K Chandrasekar Rao, Andhra Pradesh CM N Chandrababu Naidu and Tamil Nadu CM K Palaniswami. Shah called up Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray. Venkaiah Naidu informed BJP veterans Advani and Joshi about the decision. He also called up SP patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav and BSP supremo Mayawati. Yadav extended his support but suggested Naidu also talk to Ram Gopal Yadav and Naresh Agarwal.
The election will be held on 17 July and the results will be announced by 20 July. President Pranab Mukherjee ends his term on 24 July.