Ahead of the Presidential elections, Maharashtra CM and Shiv Sena rebel Eknath Shinde on Tuesday announced support to NDA candidate Droupadi Murmu in the upcoming Presidential election slated for July 18.
"We will fully support Droupadi Murmu for the Presidential elections. All our MLAs will vote for her under the guidance of PM Narendra Modi," Eknath Shinde was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Meanwhile, fearing another split in the party now by MPs Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray also announced party’s support to Murmu.
Thackeray made a formal announcement after most of the party’s 19 MPs at the marathon meeting on July 11 had made a strong case for support to Murmu who hails from the tribal community and not to the opposition’s nominee Yashwant Sinha.
‘’In the last 4-5 days, tribals and Shiv Sainiks working in that community have made a request that the party must support Murmu. The representatives from ST-SC community requested that for the first time a person from tribal community is getting a chance to become the President and therefore Shiv Sena should support Murmu. Respecting all these requests, Shiv Sena will support Droupadi Murmu in the Presidential election,’’ declared Thackeray.
‘’We are happy if a tribal woman will become the President of India. Earlier, the Shiv Sena had extended support to UPA candidates Pratibha Patil and Pranab Mukherjee instead of NDA candidates in the Presidential elections held in 2007 and 2012. Even now, the Shiv Sena is taking a different stance and supporting the NDA's Droupadi Murmu,’’ said Thackeray.