CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Thursday, met Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and discussed about the presidential election to be held before July 24 this year, that's when President Pranab Mukherjee completes his tenure.
The opposition is trying to have Patnaik's party, the BJD on their side as it carries over 32,000 votes and can help them give the ruling NDA a tough fight in the poll.
"The two leaders discussed the possibility of fielding a consensual candidate by the opposition. Yechury stressed on fielding a person with secular credentials. Patnaik said the issue will be taken forward," CPI(M) sources said.
The two also discussed about electing that candidate who does not have any political background.
"Names of some probable candidates were discussed," one of the sources said.
The CPI(M) said like-minded opposition parties should work towards electing a consensual candidate for the presidential election to ensure "secular supervision" of Rashtrapati Bhavan in the capital.
It has termed teh elction, as the first "acid test" of the parties in their bid to halt the BJP's strong hold.Opposition, including Sonia Gandhi had already met and discussed upon the issue.