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Patnaik backs Murmu, appeals to all Odisha MLAs to support her
Bhubaneswar, June 22 - Odisha Chief Minister and BJD President Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday appealed to all MLAs in the state to support Draupadi Murmu, who has been named as the NDA candidate in the presidential election.
Patnaik, who is in Rome now, made this appeal on Twitter.
"Appeal all the members of Odisha Legislative Assembly, cutting across party lines, to extend unanimous support to elect the daughter of #Odisha - Smt #DraupadiMurmu to the country's highest office," he tweeted, clearly indicating that his party will support the NDA candidate in the race for Raisina Hill.
On Tuesday, Patnaik had revealed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had earlier discussed Murmu's candidature with him. The CM also said he is sure that Murmu will set a shining example for women empowerment in the country.
In the 147-seat Odisha Assembly, the BJD has 114 members (including one expelled member), BJP 22, Congress nine, CPI-M one and there is one Independent too.
Patnaik's BJP had supported NDA candidates in the previous two presidential elections (2012, 2017) also.
In 2017, Patnaik had supported NDA candidate Ram Nath Kovind after receiving a call from the Prime Minister. At that time, he had stated that the office of the President is above political consideration and the BJD wanted to keep it above politics.
Similarly, Patnaik was the first to propose the name of former Lok Sabha Speaker P.A. Sangma for the presidential election held in 2012 against UPA nominee Pranab Mukherjee.
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