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Posted at: Apr 21, 2017, 2:13 AM; last updated: Apr 21, 2017, 11:13 AM (IST)

Presidential poll on mind, Bihar CM calls on Sonia

Oppn may pick Sharad Yadav as common candidate
Presidential poll on mind, Bihar CM calls on Sonia
Sharad Yadav

Aditi Tandon

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 20

Bihar Chief Minister and Janata Dal (United) president Nitish Kumar today met Congress president Sonia Gandhi, setting off speculation on the possibility of a united Opposition fielding a joint candidate for the upcoming Presidential election.

Nitish spent about half an hour with Sonia. It was after a long time that the AICC president met a senior leader after she took ill in August last year. The CPM has already indicated its willingness to back a common nominee against a BJP candidate. Indications are that the Opposition parties may agree on fielding former JD (U) chief Sharad Yadav, a Rajya Sabha MP. 

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Within the Congress there is an understanding that non-NDA outfits must come together to throw a challenge to the BJP. If the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and Left parties are to come together, the nominee has to be acceptable to both, and Yadav fits the bill, claim sources. “It's still early. Let us see what happens,” said a Congress source, sounding cautious. 

Nitish Kumar has already met CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury and CPI leaders. About three weeks ago, Yechury had met Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi to discuss the issue.

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