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Prez poll: Meira Kumar files nomination, says fight of ideology begins

Last updated on: June 28, 2017 17:34 IST

Opposition presidential candidate Meira Kumar on Wednesday filed her nomination in the presence of top Congress and opposition leaders and said it marked the beginning of her "fight for ideology".

IMAGE: Opposition's presidential candidate Meira Kumar files her nomination papers at Parliament House in New Delhi. Photograph: Atul Yadav/PTI Photo 

Kumar, 72, who filed her papers with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Manmohan Singh by her side, will launch her campaign from Sabarmati Ashram in Gujarat on June 30.

Accompanying the former Lok Sabha speaker as she filed her nomination in Parliament House were a host of opposition leaders, including Nationalist Congress Party's Sharad Pawar and Communist Party of India-Marxist general secretary Sitaram Yechury.

Sonia Gandhi and other top Congress and other opposition leaders were amongst those who proposed and seconded her nomination.

IMAGE: Meira Kumar poses for photographers with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi , former Prime Minister Manmohan SIngh and other leaders. Photograph: Shirish Shete/PTI Photo 

"I have filed my nomination papers as the opposition candidate for the presidential election. Along with Sonia Gandhi, leaders of 16 opposition parties were also present as were members of the electoral college.

"From today, our fight of ideology has started. This ideology is based on democratic values, inclusiveness in society, freedom of the press and individuals, end of poverty, transparency and destruction of caste structure," she said after filing her papers.

She also said she doesn't merely believe in talking about about this ideology, but in implementing it.

IMAGE: Gandhi is one of Kumar's proposers in one set of nomination papersPhotograph: Shirish Shete/PTI Photo 

Kumar said she had already appealed to all members of the electoral college that this was a very important time when the country stood at a crossroads.

"There is one path which takes us towards narrow-mindedness and no concern for the poor and downtrodden, while the other path leads to upliftment of Dalits, poor, oppressed, downtrodden, women and labour and people of all religions.

"I have urged everyone to hear the voice of their inner conscience and take the country forward."

She said she would reach Sabarmati, from where she draws strength and inspiration, tomorrow evening itself and would start her campaign the next day. From there, she would go to Mumbai and Bangalore and be in Bihar on July 6.

IMAGE: Before filing her nominations, Meira and her husband Manjul Kumar pay homage at the Rajghat. Photograph: Kamal Kishore/PTI Photo 

She ends her campaign on July 15.

The nomination papers will be scrutinised on Thursday.

Kumar, who will contest against NDA's Ram Nath Kovind in the July 17 presidential elections, had said yesterday that it was a battle of ideologies and not a 'Dalit versus Dalit' fight as was being made out by some.

Prez poll is battle of ideology and principles: Sonia Gandhi

Congress President Sonia Gandhi described the presidential election as a battle of ideologies and principles and said the opposition was determined to fight it.

"For us, it is a battle of ideologies, principles and truth and we will fight it," she said after the opposition's presidential candidate Meira Kumar filed her nomination in Parliament.

The Congress president led the 17 opposition parties in accompanying the former Lok Sabha speaker.

Gandhi is one of Kumar's proposers in one set of nomination papers, sources said.

Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, who is abroad on a vacation, said Kumar represents the values that bind the country and its people.

"Against the ideology of divisiveness she represents the values that bind us as a nation and people. Proud to have Meira Kumar ji as our candidate," he tweeted.

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