In her first stop down south after being named the NDA's Presidential candidate, Draupadi Murmu on Saturday met the legislators of the ruling AINRC-led coalition in Puducherry and sought their support.
In a closed-door meeting of the NDA constituents, which included the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) which has no representation in the Assembly, Murmu addressed a joint meeting of MLAs of the ruling NDA comprising the N Rangasamy-led AINRC, the BJP, and some independent members.
Murmu and Opposition's joint candidate Yashwant Sinha are facing off in the July 18 presidential polls. Puducherry Chief Minister N Rangasamy, his cabinet colleagues including Home Minister A Namassivayam and the ruling coalition legislators, BJP Rajya Sabha MP from the union territory, S Selvaganapthy, and others participated in the meeting which lasted for nearly half an hour.
Earlier, upon her arrival at the airport here, Murmu was received by the CM, Ministers, and some MLAs. The hotel where the presidential candidate addressed the MLAs was abuzz with activity. She was presented a "poorna kumbam" honor by a group of BJP volunteers.
Although the AIADMK does not have representation in the territorial assembly, the party's East and West wing secretaries, A Anbalagan and Om Sakthi Sekar, however, called on Murmu and extended their wishes to her on her arrival at the hotel.
The territorial assembly has 30 elected and three nominated legislators. The ruling AINRC has ten members and BJP six while there are six independents. The opposition comprising the DMK and Congress has six and two elected legislators, respectively. Although there are three nominated members owing allegiance to the BJP they do not however have voting rights in the presidential poll.