Raisina race: Kalam chapter closed now, says Mulayam
Lucknow/New Delhi, June 18 (ANI): With former President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam finally ruling out that he was not in the race for Raisina Hill, Samajwadi Party (SP) supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav on Monday expressed confidence about United Progressive Alliance (UPA) nominee and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee taking charge as the 13th President of India.
"That chapter is closed now. Pranab Mukherjee is UPA's nominee. Our support is also there. Now, let's wait for the results," he told media in Lucknow.
Yadav had earlier on Saturday justified his party's decision to back Mukherjee, saying the latter was a man of stature and an experienced person, who was capable of taking everybody along.
"Brokers strike a deal. The Samajwadi Party is against brokers. There was no deal. Pranab Mukherjee is a man of stature. He is an experienced person and he is capable of taking everybody along that is why the Samajwadi Party has decided to support Pranab Mukherjee," said Yadav, while rubbishing reports that he has struck a deal with the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA) to support Mukherjee for the coveted post.
"President doesn't belong to any party. It is not a matter of the Congress Party, it is a matter of the country," he added.
Dr. Kalam earlier today said he never aspired to serve another term or show interest in contesting the election for the coveted post against UPA nominee and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.
"You are aware of the developments in the run up of the presidential election. Though I have never aspired to serve another term or show interest in contesting the election, Madam Mamata Banerjee and other political parties wanted me to be their candidates, many citizens also expressed the same wish. It only reflects their love and affection for me and the aspiration of the people," said Dr. Kalam in a statement.
"I am really overwhelmed by this support. This being their wish, I respect it. I want to thank them for the trust they have in me. I have considered the totality of the matter and present political situation and decided not to contest the presidential election 2012," he added.
Dr Kalam has allegedly conveyed this to senior BJP leader LK Advani, who phoned him this morning before sending his emissary Sudheendra Kulkarni to him.
Dr. Kalam had earlier on June 15 said that leaders of various political outfits have asked him to serve as the next President of India, but added that he would take an appropriate decision on this issue at the right time.
"Many political leaders have spoken to me. They want me to serve as the president. They all contacted me. I respect their views. However, I will take the right decision at the right time," Kalam had told the media in Patna. The support that Pranab Mukherjee's candidature has received indicated that contesting him would be difficult.
The latest developments have now imposed more pressure on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), as they will now either have to back former Lok Sabha speaker and NCP leader P.A. Sangma or come out with a new name for the coveted post after holding due consultations.
Abdul Kalam served as the 11th President of India, succeeding K. R. Narayanan. He won the 2002 presidential election with an electoral vote of 922,884, surpassing 107,366 votes won by Lakshmi Sahgal. He served from July 25, 2002 to July 24, 2007.
Kalam was succeeded by Pratibha Devisingh Patil, whose term as President of India ends on July 24. (ANI)
Read More: Lakshmi Narayan Mittal | Recent Socio- Political and Economical developments in Afghanistan | Raisina | Kot Abdul Khaliq | Lucknow Gpo | Lucknow Chowk Ho | Abdul Wahidganj | Chak Abdul Sattar | Kalam | Sangma | Karala Kalam | Lakshmi Bazar | Lakshmi Coil | R.n. Mukherjee Road | Lakshmi Narayan Pur | Akhilesh Yadav | Mamata Banerjee | Pranab Mukherjee | National Democratic Alliance (India) | Janata Dal (United) information
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