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Rashid Masood files papers for Vice President

The Third Front candidate files nomination papers accompanied by leaders of all the seven parties of UNPA.

india Updated: Jul 20, 2007 15:24 IST

Third Front candidate Rashid Masood on Friday filed nomination papers for the August 10 Vice Presidential poll with backing from regional parties, including AIADMK, which had voted in yesterday's presidential poll defying the grouping's decision to abstain.

Masood, who was accompanied by leaders of all the seven parties of the United National Progressive Alliance (UNPA), filed one set of papers carrying 40 signatures of proposers and seconders, which included MPs of the AIADMK and MDMK.

After filing the nomination paper, the leaders posed for photographs seeking to put up a united face, a day after MPs from AIADMK, MDMK and SP participated in the voting for electing the successor to A P J Abdul Kalam.

"We are solid as rock," SP leader Amar Singh told reporters adding that the UNPA was committed to providing an anti-BJP, anti-Congress secular alternative.

He said some MPs belonging to UNPA parties had voted out of a confusion created by the Election Commission and senior BJP leader LK Advani that by abstaining they might lose their membership.

To a question, he said AIADMK supremo Jayalalithaa did not come today as she was unwell. "But AIADMK is very much represented by Rajya Sabha member K Malaisamy," he pointed out.

Seeking to downplay reports that the Third Front has split, a TDP leader said the UNPA has not been constituted just for the sake of presidential or vice-presidential poll. "It has a long term programme," he said.