Putting a lid over speculation about his entry into the Vice-Presidential race, former West Bengal governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi on Sunday categorically said that he would not contest for the post.
"I have thanked West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee for having thought of me and suggested to the UPA partners my name for the Vice-Presidential election," he said, a day after the Congress-led alliance announced Vice-President Hamid Ansari as its candidate for a second term.
Asked whether any other leader had requested him to enter the fray, Gandhi told PTI, "Some people approached me, but I said thank you. I will not."
He said he had also congratulated Ansari on Saturday after his name was announced by the UPA.
With the UPA, SP and BSP backing the candidature of 75-year-old Ansari, a career diplomat and former Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University, his second term in the high office is a certainty.
Trinamool Congress' Rajya Sabha member Kunal Ghosh had said yesterday that his party leader and railway minister Mukul Roy had at the UPA meeting proposed the names of Gandhi and Krishna Bose, a former Parliamentarian and wife of Sishir Bose, Netaji Subash Chandra Bose's nephew.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had on Saturday telephoned Mamata Banerjee to seek her party's support for Ansari and she had reportedly said she would take a final call in two or three days.