In the presence of various opposition leaders, Yashwant Sinha, the unified opposition candidate for president, filed his nomination today. NCP leader Sharad Pawar and former Congressman Rahul Gandhi stood on either side of him.
Akhilesh Yadav of the Samajwadi Party, Abhishek Banerjee of the Trinamool Congress, Farooq Abdullah of the Jammu & Kashmir National Conference, Jayant Sinha of the RLD, Sitaram Yechury of the CPI (M), and KT Rama Rao of the TRS were among the opposition leaders present at the Parliament building when the 84-year-old former union minister
The K Chandrashekhar Rao-led Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), which had previously expressed concerns about the process of selecting the candidate and sharing a platform with the opposition Congress, today confirmed its support for Mr. Sinha in a last-minute boost.
The polls are overwhelmingly against Mr. Sinha, and Draupadi Murmu of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is the most likely winner. The opposition is attempting to present a unified front against the BJP, thus today’s display of force is being viewed as an important political move.
Mr Sinha has said that a “rubber stamp” President will not do and that he will be “more constitutional” if elected as President than Draupadi Murmu. He has also said that while they do not have any “personal fight” with Ms Murmu, the election is a battle of issues to save the Constitution of India.