Prez polls: NCP dismisses report on Sangma's candidature

Prez polls: NCP dismisses report on Sangma's candidature

Sharad Pawar's NCP today sought to dismiss a report that its senior leader P A Sangma's name has come up as a candidate for the next Presidential polls, saying the issue has not been discussed so far.

"Sangmaji may be interested. But, we have not discussed the issue in the party so far. We have a meeting of our Working Committee on April 25, when  it could come up," party general secretary Tariq Anwar told PTI.

Anwar insisted that the NCP is part of the UPA and it would go along with the ruling alliance in the Presidential elections scheduled in July to elect a successor to Pratibha Patil.

"We are part of the UPA and we will go along with it. We will go by the consensus," he said, seeking to dismiss suggestions that the party would toe an independent line.
His remarks come in the wake of a report which claimed that the Nationalist Congress Party has come up with Sangma's name for the next President at a time when both the UPA and the NDA are short of requisite numbers.

The report also spoke of the NCP, an ally of the UPA, sending feelers to the NDA, including the BJP, on the former Speaker's name and is said to be getting a "positive" response.
Anwar said such an idea is "not feasible" until and unless Sangma becomes a "compromise candidate" of both the UPA and the NDA.

Names of Vice-President Hamid Ansari and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee are being talked about as likely candidates in the Presidential polls.

Pawar along with Sangma and Anwar had parted ways with the Congress in 1999 over the issue of foreign origin of Congress President Sonia Gandhi.

In 2009, Sangma had called on Gandhi to apologise for what had happened a decade ago.

Sangma's daughter Agatha is a Union Minister since 2009 as one of the NCP representatives in the UPA-II coalition. Gandhi is the UPA Chairperson.

Congress has been maintaining that it will try to create a consensus among the secular parties both within the UPA and outside on the issue of the Presidential elections.
It has been side-stepping questions whether it was ready for a 'give and take' formula with the NDA in the Presidential and Vice Presidential elections.

The party has been admitting that Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav and Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee, both of whom have a major chunk of the vote share, will play a crucial role in deciding the nominee.

The Congress will even try to bring the Left parties onboard, according to party sources.

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