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SP backs out from supporting Kalam

India TV News Desk 22 Jun 2012, 10:45:00 IST
India TV News Desk
New Delhi, June 15: In a complete U-turn, Samajwadi Party today appeared to be backing out from supporting Mamata Banerjee's proposal to project former president Dr APJ Abdul Kalam as the presidential candidate.

SP general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav told newspersons that Kalam could be Mamata Banerjee's choice, but it was not a joint choice of both SP and Trinamool Congress.

“When she said ‘hamarey'(our) choice, she could have meant ‘merey (my) choice”, Yadav explained.

The SP general secretary said, party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav would take a right decision at the right time.

Ram Gopal Yadav ruled out a snap midterm elections saying that it would entail huge cost on both the exchequer and the people. He however said that his party would not join the UPA.

Samajwadi Party today declared  that it was against any attempt to destabilise the government when the country was facing a serious financial crisis.

“At this stage, when the country is facing a serious financial crisis, making any attempt to destabilise the government and creating political instability will be hurtful to the nation,” SP Vice President Mohan Singh told PTI.  Declaring that SP will never support NDA's candidate in the Presidential poll, he asked, “How could we support NDA led by BJP and communal forces...How can NDA be a secular force as long as Narendra Modi is there ?”

He said that SP was with UPA as it was “led by secular forces”.

“That is why we are tolerating this government for the last three years without taking any share in power. Except in matters of corruption and rising prices, we are with UPA,” he said, adding that on these two issues, SP will oppose the UPA tooth and nail.

Mohan Singh claimed that three candidates announced by Trinamool Congress chief for the Presidential poll are unlikely to contest as Somnath Chatterjee has expressed surprise over the development and A P J Abdul Kalam wants to be a consensus candidate.

“Without getting their prior consent, Mamata has announced their names,” Singh said, adding that SP will decide on the issue of support in the Presidential election after UPA and NDA announce their candidates.

Seeking to mollify Trinamool Congress, Singh said that SP was “100 per cent with Mamata and will stay with her”.  At the same time, he said it was “our duty” to tell Mamata that “the country is in great crisis and any move to destabilise the government is not fair”. 

Sources in Samajwadi Party said that Yadav, his cousin and Party General Secretary Ram Gopal Yadav and another senior leader Naresh Aggarwal have held at least five rounds of discussion with Congress leaders.

The SP chief last night refused to declare Kalam as his preferred candidate.  He is understood to have told Banerjee that any final decision on a single name has to be endorsed by other SP leaders.

Meanwhile, Aggarwal and Ram Gopal Yadav met Mulayam Singh Yadav this morning.