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So it does not matter who is a better candidate. All you need to be is 'secular' and flaunt it as well. The fact that these small-time wannabes of Indian politics are not able to make up their minds for supporting an ex Vice President against a near-anonymous candidate goes to highlight the insecurity of these regional parties. I am no avid supporter of Shekhawat, I can't recall what has he done for the people of Rajasthan, much less India. But then, who has. As for Patil, who just happens to have right marriage of feminism, loyalty to Gandhis, a surname (or middle, or whatever) to appease the Marathi jingoism and placate the Rajput शान and an not-so high profile name, all I needed to hear was her declaration that she will not be a puppet। Pardon me, madame; but who has ridden a royal bagghi on Janpath on the 26th January and not be on virtually a payroll of the ruling party. KRN and APJ are notable exceptions, and Indian democracy would be a lot poorer but for these men; but what is noteworthy is that they are puppets: KRN could not do anything but to watch Gujrat burn in hell, and APJ was coaxed to sign the office of profit bill. They tried, as much as they could, never mind the result, but the efforts would go a long way in redefining roles of the Indian president. Let's not flag the dead horses of operation bluestar and Zail Singh.
I cannot think of a single Indian who would not want Kalam to continue, except for the ones running the show from Lutyens' bungalows. All concerns point to the next General Elections, where the verdict, as has been recently, is expected to be fractured. That's has been the real कर्मभूमि of the Indian president, of late. Let's hope the chosen one stands up to the occasion when it comes, whosoever it is.