Sonia, Pawar discuss presidental poll

Sonia, Pawar discuss presidental poll

As speculations over the presidential poll gains momentum, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday met Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar over the issue.

Sources in the Congress said the party leadership will hold discussion with DMK chief M Karunanidhi over the issue next week.

Following the half an hour meeting between Gandhi and Pawar, sources said apart from the possible presidential candidates, the leaders also discussed the major bills to be passed in the Budget Session of Parliament.“We want a name with consensus,” NCP General Secretary D P Tripathi said. Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the NCP's extended working committee meeting here, Tripathi said the issue of presidential candidates did not feature in the meeting.

“The president's post is the top post in the country. It is necessary to maintain its dignity,” he said. The TrMC, another key UPA ally, said it would decide on its nominee only after the date for election to the top post is announced. TMC leader and Railway Minister Mukul Roy said: “It would be too premature to decide on a candidate now.”

RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav came out in support of Vice-president Hamid Ansari as the presidential candidate while SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav said his party was yet to take a decision on the matter.

The BJP, on its part, has indicated that it would not accept anyone close to Sonia Gandhi as the country’s next president.

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