Modi attends BJP Parliamentary Board meeting

Paswan said his party will stand by the Prime Minister's decision while the Samajwadi Party is understood to have favoured a politician as the new President.

Parliamentary Board will meet on Tuesday to finalise Presidential candidate for the upcoming election, said sources.

The party has prepared four sets of nomination papers, leaving the space for the name of the candidate blank.

Shah had on Sunday met its sulking ally and Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray and his son Aditya Thackerey in Mumbai to ensure the Sena's crucial support.

Shah, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's closest adviser and top campaign strategist, played up the humble origins of Kovind, 71, who has served two terms in the upper house of parliament and is a practising lawyer. Talking to reporters in New Delhi, Mr Naidu said, BJP will announce its presidential nominee before 23rd of this month. The last date for filing of nominations is June 28.

The BJP leaders also had meetings with AIADMK leader M Thambidurai and CPI leader S Sudhakar Reddy, Samajwadi party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav and BSP leader Satish Chandra Mishra.

Mr Naidu briefed BJP President Amit Shah on discussions with various parties so far.

Kovind's nomination to the largely ceremonial post of president would be expected to garner enough votes from the BJP and its allies in an electoral college that brings together federal and state lawmakers.

It is not clear whether it will come out with an announcement on Monday itself. He is the member of a group formed by Mr Shah to hold consultation with political parties on presidential elections.

"There is no question of consensus on the issue as BJP has not mentioned any name, instead they tried asking us the same".

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