TRS to support Kovind for Presidential election (Lead)
Hyderabad June 19 (IANS) The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) Monday decided to support NDA s Presidential candidate Ram Nath Kovind.
Telangana s ruling party took the decision after its president and Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao received a phone call from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Soon after deciding the candidature of Bihar Governor Kovind Modi telephoned Rao and requested his support for the candidature.
As per your suggestion we have decided upon a Dalit candidate for the Presidential post a statement from the Chief Minister quoted the Prime Minister as saying. Modi requested Rao to support the candidate.
The TRS chief consulted the party colleagues and later conveyed his party support for the Presidential candidate to the PM.
With nearly 23 000 votes in the electoral college for presidential election TRS is considered as a kingmaker along with AIADMK and the BJD.
The TRS is seen as friendly to the Centre and Chandrasekhar Rao has had good relations with Modi over last three years. TRS leaders say he was the first non-BJP chief minister to support the demonetisation move.
Despite the bitterness caused by BJP President Amit Shah s remarks during his visit to Telangana last month Rao has continued to have good rapport with Modi.
Shah s claim that the Centre provided Rs.1 lakh crore to Telangana in three years and that TRS government failed to reach benefits of central schemes to people had evoked angry reaction from Rao who had dared him to prove his claim or apologise to people of Telangana.
Due to the huge row kicked up by Amit Shah s statement the PM himself called Rao to seek his party s support TRS sources said.