Kovind arrives in Chandigarh to meet Punjab, Haryana MLAs

June 29, 2017 10:52 PM

Chandigarh :  NDA presidential nominee Ram Nath Kovind arrived here on Thursday to meet MLAs and MPs of Haryana and Punjab BJP and those of its ally SAD as part of his campaign for the July 17 election. Kovind, who was accompanied by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and senior BJP leader Anil Jain, was given a rousing welcome at the airport here by NDA leaders from the twin states.

The 71-year-old Kovind will hold separate meetings with Punjab SAD-BJP MLAs and MPs here and later with the BJP parliamentarians of Haryana at Panchkula, said Kamal Sharma, former Punjab BJP president.

Former Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal and other senior leaders of the Akali Dal would also be present at the meeting along with BJP legislators and parliamentarians from the state here.

“Kovind ji’s arrival got slightly delayed due to bad weather conditions as the aircraft could not take off well in time from Delhi,” Kamal Sharma, who was among those present at the airport to welcome Kovind, said.

The SAD-BJP coalition has 18 MLAs (15 SAD, 3 BJP) in the 117-member Punjab Assembly while the ruling Congress has 77. The AAP has 20 legislators and its ally Lok Insaaf Party two. Among the Lok Sabha members in Punjab, the ruling Congress has four, the SAD has three, the BJP had two MPs but recently Gurdaspur MP Vinod Khanna passed away. The AAP has four, out of which two have been suspended by the party.

In the Rajya Sabha, the SAD has three, the BJP one and the Congress has three members. In the 90-member Haryana Assembly, the ruling BJP enjoys a majority with 47 MLAs and the support of five Independents. The Congress has 17 MLAs. The SAD has a lone legislator in Haryana Assembly while the INLD (The Indian National Lok Dal), which is the principal opposition party, has 19

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