If no consensus over govt nominee, opposition to decide candidate: Mamata

Mamata Banerjee
Photo of the West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee.

Bengal: West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee today stated that the if the nominee suggested by the government is not acceptable by them then the opposition party will form a committee to choose a Presidential candidate.

“For the Presidential election, the decision (of the meeting) is ‘Let us wait’ for the name of the candidate that may be given by the government, and if it satisfies all of us, then we can take a look at it. He should be secular and uphold the Constitution. If there is no consensus, then a committee (of opposition leaders) will be formed that will decide (on the opposition candidate),” she told reporters coming out of the luncheon meeting convened by Congress President Sonia Gandhi in Parliament House.

She said there was no harm in discussing a candidate with the government if it comes out with it.

She referred to the 2002 Presidential election when the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had floated A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s name and a consensus was evolved around it.

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Asked about another term for incumbent Pranab Mukherjee, she said no names were discussed in the meeting.

Banerjee said all the parties were united in criticism of the government over Kashmir, violence in Saharanpur and demonetisation.

She said a joint statement to be issued after the meeting would reflect the opposition view on all the issues.

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