Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath today asked opposition parties to rise above party politics and support senior BJP leader Ram Nath Kovind for the post of President.
Describing Bihar Governor Kovind's candidature by NDA as supreme honour of the Dalit samaj, Adityanath at a hurriedly convened press conference said someone from among them has been selected for the top most constitutional post of the country.
"It is a new social awakening that a Dalit has been selected for the top most constitutional post of the country for which I want to thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah on behalf of the people of the state," the chief minister stressed.
"It is my appeal to all political parties to rise above party politics and support the son of Uttar Pradesh to become the president," he said, adding that this was his personal appeal as well as that on behalf of his government.
"It is a matter of pride for the 22 crore people of the state," he said.
Meanwhile, BJP celebrated the candidature of Kovind as presidential candidate at the state headquarters here with workers and activists distributing sweets amid drum beats and bursting of crackers.
NDA today announced the name of Kovind, a Dalit leader born in Ghatampur area of Kanpur Dehat district as its presidential candidate.
The 71-year-old two-term BJP Rajya Sabha member, is seen as an astute choice by the saffron party, which has been targeted by opposition parties over Dalit issues, and his election is almost a certainty as the ruling bloc with the support of some regional parties enjoys a majority in the electoral college.
K R Narayanan was the country's first Dalit president.