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HindustanTimes Sat,27 Dec 2014

BJD supports Sangma for Presidential candidate

Agencies  New Delhi, June 16, 2012
First Published: 14:18 IST(16/6/2012) | Last Updated: 15:27 IST(16/6/2012)

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) said on Saturday that it would support PA Sangma in the Presidential race. Party leader Arjun Sethi said that the decision was taken at a meeting held with BJD chief and Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik.

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Sangma is still insisting on contesting, saying that he has been supported by AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa and BJD chief Naveen Patnaik.

"I am in the fray as a tribal candidate, not as a NCP candidate," Sangma, a former Lok Sabha speaker, had said earlier.

The NCP on Saturday has, however, asked him to withdraw, saying the party's line was to support Pranab Mukherjee for the top constitutional post "unconditionally".

"Let me make it very clear that Mr Sangma does not enjoy support of the NCP. We wish that he does not contest. If he does, I cannot sat anything now, he is a senior leader, but I don't think he should defy the party's direction or the line of thinking," senior NCP leader and Union minister Praful Patel said in New Delhi.

Asked if he was hinting of any action against Sangma, Patel said, "I am nobody to take action, but the fact is nobody -- either me or anybody -- should defy the line or the direction the party has taken."

"And in this case, the party's direction and the line is to support Pranab Mukherjee unconditionally," Patel told NDTV.

(With PTI inputs)


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