Presidential poll begins, Modi among first to vote

Presidential Election 2017: Electors Are Using These Special Ink Pens to Cast Their Votes Today

Presidential polls 2017: EC's special violet pens being used for casting of votes

So, clearly, Meira Kumar needed a lot of support to win the election. "All rumours are baseless and should be ignored", he added.

The total strength of the electoral college is 10,98,903 votes, with each Parliamentarian carrying a vote value of 708. The votes would be counted and results would be announced on July 20. "We had announced it earlier itself because we can not vote for a candidate who was supported by CPI-M", Sudip Burman, leader of the group of sacked TMC MLAs told reporters.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah were among the first to cast their votes in Parliament.

Meanwhile, MPs and MLAs, who will cast their votes, have been barred from carrying their personal pens inside the voting chamber and will have to mark their ballot with a specially designed marker, the Election Commission said. Backing Kumar, the CPI (M) urged voters, comprising MPs and MLAs, to pick the "custodian of the Constitution" thoughtfully and while voting listen to the voice of conscience.

Former Lok Sabha speaker Meira is backed by the Congress and 17 opposition parties, including the Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, NCP, AAP and the Trinamool Congress.

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"Today NDA's presidential candidate Ram Nath Kovind along with me held discussions with the legislators supporting the Parrikar-led government in Goa". The country's 14th President will assume office at Rashtrapati Bhavan on July 25. This is the ideology which binds India together.

Dalits, who number around 200 million in the nation of 1.3 billion, form a sizeable chunk of the population in some states which go to polls this year and early next year.

On Sunday, Sonia Gandhi had made it abundantly clear that the opposition knows that they know they don't have the numbers, but, she said that "the battle must be fought and fought hard". We are excited... We are part of it.

"The party has taken a stand and we are making all possible efforts to ensure Meira Kumar wins", he said.

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