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PM invites Uddhav Thackeray on dinner to discuss Presidential poll strategy

Mumbai: Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray has been invited to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dinner party being hosted next week for the NDA allies to firm up the strategy for the upcoming presidential polls.

“Modi has called up the meeting of NDA constituents after Gudi Padwa, most likely on March 29, and Uddhav Thackeray will be present for the meeting,” said Shiv Sena source.

“It is Modi ji’s dinner diplomacy in which he will try and get consent over a name for the presidential election slated in July this year,” a Sena leader said.

A Central BJP leader, meanwhile, claimed that party stalwart Lal Krishna Advani, Lok Sabha speaker Sumitra Mahajan, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Jharkhand Governor Droupadi Murmu are the among the prime aspirants for the post of President.

President Pranab Mukherjee had assumed the office on July 25, 2012 and thus, the next president has to be elected before July 25.

All members of Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and various state assemblies are voters in Presidential elections.

“Though the BJP has majority in Lok Sabha and it is in power in several states, they do not want the allies to give any reason to complain. That is why Modi ji is to host the dinner,” the Sena source said.

—PTI