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Rediff.com  » News » Wouldn't like to comment: Pranab on BJP's petition plan

Wouldn't like to comment: Pranab on BJP's petition plan

July 05, 2012 18:19 IST

United Progressive Alliance's Presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday refused to comment on the Bharatiya Janata Party's plan to file an election petition against his nomination.

"I would not like to comment on this issue. What they do is up to them," he said at a press conference.

"I am here to exchange gratitude with MLAs and MPs for supporting me as the UPA's Presidential candidate. The post of President is to symbolise national aspiration, spirit and ethos and to protect constitution.

"As a candidate, I am not supposed to talk about the government policies and programmes and political issues now," he said.

Rival candidate P A Sangma, who is supported by BJP, Biju Janata Dal and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, had sought cancellation of Mukherjee's nomination under the Office of Profit rules on the ground that he was chairman of the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI), a charge rejected by the UPA candidate. But the returning officer for the Presidential poll turned down the objection and cleared Mukherjee's candidature.

Sangma, however, demanded that the order rejecting his objections be provided to him following which the Election Commission on Wednesday asked the returning officer to provide details of the scrutiny proceedings and the order on rejection of Sangma's objection to Mukherjee's candidature.

The BJP also threatened to file an election petition.

Mukherjee, who reached here in the morning as part of his campaign and held meetings with party MLAs and MPs, said at present he is "talking in a non-partisan manner".

He said he has also been meeting leaders of "those parties who are not in the UPA government but have supported us from outside".

The Congress has 102 MLAs in the 200-member House in Rajasthan. Two of its legislators -- Mahipal Maderna and Malkhan Bishnoi -- are lodged in jail in connection with infamous Bhanwari Devi abduction and murder case. The party also enjoys the support of 10 independent MLAs.

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