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CM appeals opposition to rise above politics, support Ram Nath Kovid
Welcoming the ruling NDA’s decision to announce Bihar Governor Ram Nath Kovid as its Presidential candidate, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath appealed to Opposition parties to rise above party politics and support a Dalit from Uttar Pradesh for the coveted post.
“It is a honour for the 22 crore people of UP and particularly Dalits of the country as the BJP has named Kovid as its Presidential candidate. It is the right time for Opposition parties in the state to support a Dalit leader irrespective of party lines,” Yogi said at a hurriedly called press conference in Lucknow on Monday.
Adityanath said that the candidature of Kovid will throw a new ‘social dimension’ in the country as it was a proud moment for Dalits.
“ At present Kovid is the best choice for the top post. It would be nice if we have a President by consensus. Besides it is a honour for UP that a President is slated to be elected from the state that to from Dalit community for the first time. For this we must thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi and national BJP chief Amit Shah ,” Yogi said.
When asked whether the BJP and the NDA leadership had taken his view before the announcement, the Chief Minister said that the party had discussed with him before an official announcement was made.
If elected President, Ram Nath Kovid will be the second President of India having links with Uttar Pradesh. The third President of India, Zakir Hussain, although born in Hyderabad, studied in Islamia High School of Etawah before graduating from Aligarh Muslim University (AMU).
Incidentally, like Kovid, Zakir Hussain was also Governor of Bihar. Kovid is a prominent Dalit face in BJP and belongs to Kori caste of Schedule Caste. He was born in Paraunkh village of Derapur tehsil in Kanpur Dehat district. He was a government servant and was elected to the prestigious Civil Services in his third attempt but chose Allied services.
Kovid worked at the Supreme Court in 1975 and became the Private Secretary of former Prime Minister Moraji Desai in 1977. He later joined the BJP and contested from Ghatampur Lok Sabha seat in 1990 but lost. He was sent to the Rajya Sabha twice in 1993 and 1999 by the BJP and was the Dalit face of the party in UP after being made the BJP’s Schedule Caste Morcha’s president.
In 2007, Kovid contested the UP Assembly polls from Bhognipur seat in Kanpur Dehat and lost again. He also assumed several posts in the state BJP organisation.
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