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Match over for Kalam: Pawar

NCP rules out its support, asking Kalam not to be a "player" in the presidential poll.

india Updated: Jun 21, 2007 18:44 IST

As the Third Front continues efforts for a "consensus" for re-election of President APJ Abdul Kalam, NCP on Thursday ruled out its support, asking him not to be a "player" in the presidential poll.

"He will not be at the crease. So, he will not be in the game. He will not be a player," NCP chief Sharad Pawar, who also heads the cricket control board, told reporters after signing nomination papers favouring UPA-Left candidate Pratibha Patil.

"The match is over for Kalam ... We do not expect the game to be started again. We are very clear about that," Pawar said.

"I know him. We have worked together and he will not be there (in the fray)," said Pawar, under whom Kalam served as Scientific Adviser when the former was Defence Minister.

Describing Kalam as an "honest person to the core", Pawar said, however, it was a "pity" that a person occupying the highest post had suddenly started talking of a contest after having declared he was not interested in anything.

The NCP leader took a dig at Kalam for saying that he would contest if he was sure of victory.

"In a democracy, anyone interested in public life can contest Lok Sabha elections from whichever constituency one likes. But one cannot say that he will contest only if he wins," he said.

First Published: Jun 21, 2007 18:02 IST