Bhubaneswar: With the announcement of dates for the prestigious presidential election, all eyes are on the move of BJD supremo and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Analysts feel that Naveen Patnaik can ensure smooth victory for the BJP-led NDA candidate.
Currently, Opposition parties collectively have 51.1 per cent share of the Electoral College, while the BJP and its alliance have 48.9 per cent. The NDA needs only 1.2 per cent to cross the halfway mark.
With 21 MPs (12 in Lok Sabha and nine in Rajya Sabha) and 114 MLAs in the Assembly, the BJD has 2.9 per cent of votes in its kitty. So, the BJD under the leadership of Naveen Patnaik is going to play a crucial role during the presidential election, it was learnt.
The ruling party has not disclosed its card yet for the election of India’s ‘First Citizen’. Naveen had earlier stated that he will take a decision looking into the profile of the candidates for the election.
Notably, the BJD had supported non-UPA candidates for the presidential polls during the last two elections held in 2017 and 2012.
In September 2020, Naveen had supported NDA candidate Harivansh Narayan Singh in the election to the post of deputy chairman of Rajya Sabha. However, the party had also supported UPA candidate Gopalkrishna Gandhi during the vice-presidential election in 2017.