NCP rules out support to Sangma as President

Both BJP and NCP led by Sharad Pawar are not impressed with AIADMK and BJD’s decision to support PA Sangma for President.

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: Although J Jayalalithaa-led AIADMK and BJD chief Naveen Patnaik have expressed support for PA Sangma as the next President of the country, the former Lok Sabha Speaker is not likely to be endorsed by other political players in the presidential race.

Reports, Friday, claimed that both BJP and NCP led by Sharad Pawar are not impressed with AIADMK and BJD’s decision to support PA Sangma for President.

While NCP had virtually disowned attempts by its leader Sangma to enter the Presidential race, BJP is also not like to rally behind the former Lok Sabha Speaker.

"I am not aware of any such development. Sangma has not spoken to us. We have had no discussions. We feel that with such a limited strength, we cannot aspire for such a major post," party chief and Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar told reporters last night.

Sangma, who reportedly met NCP chief this morning, said the NCP leader told him that the party is part of UPA and his stand on the issue will be consistent with it.

At the same time, Pawar today said NCP party leaders would discuss all suggestions given by Sangma.
On his part, Sangma explained to him that he was part of a forum which was pushing for a tribal leader to become the next President.

Pawar`s party is a key ally of the Congress-led UPA at the Centre since May 2004 and the two parties are also sharing power in Maharashtra since 2009. He had sometimes back met Congress President Sonia Gandhi, who has been holding consultations with UPA constituents and allies over the Presidential election.

Meanwhile reacting to the development, the main opposition BJP said that it will take a call on the candidature for the top post and is unlikely to support Sangma.
Sangma had earlier met the Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj and her Rajya Sabha counterpart Arun Jaitley. However, the main opposition party is yet to clear its stand on the issue.

The reaction from NCP and BJP comes a day after Odisha Chief Minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik added a new twist to the presidential race by supporting the candidature of the 65-year-old tribal leader from the north eastern state of Meghalaya for the post of President of India.

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