Maharashtra cheers Kovind’s victory

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Mumbai, July 20 (IANS) Top political leaders from Maharashtra cutting across party lines on Thursday congratulated Ram Nath Kovind for being elected the 14th President of India.

Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao and Bharatiya Janata Party state President Raosaheb Patil Danve wished the President-elect “a successful tenure in the service of the people”, while Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that his victory signals the start of a new era in the country.

“With his rich experience in social and political spheres, with his election as the President of the world’s largest democracy, he will definitely show a new direction,” Fadnavis said.

Ruling ally Shiv Sena’s youth leader Aditya Thackeray also congratulated Kovind for his election “with such a thumping majority.”

Senior Congress leader Narayan Rane and Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar also expressed their “best wishes to Kovind”.

Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Legislative Council Dhananjay Munde (from NCP) hoped that Kovind’s leadership “will make us a strong nation.” Other prominent personalities who welcomed Kovind’s election included Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Prakash Javadekar and Piyush Goyal.

Meanwhile, state Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant offered solace to Kovind’s opponent Meira Kumar. “You fought for the national cause like a true warrior. Your efforts will not go in vain. We all will follow you.”

Earlier, soon after the election outcome was announced in New Delhi, celebrations erupted at the state BJP headquarters in Mumbai.

Hundreds of party activists burst firecrackers, danced and played drums, distributed sweets and embraced each other cheering Kovind’s victory.

Similar celebrations were witnessed in other parts of the state including Thane, Pune, Nagpur and Kolhapur.

Incidentally, Maharashtra was the last port of call for Kovind during the campaigning for the presidential election. He had visited Mumbai on July 15, two days before the election.

–IANS

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