NDA uses VP poll to present picture of unity

New Delhi: BJP-led NDA is utilising the Vice Presidential poll to project a picture of unity and reach out to non-Congress parties with an eye on the 2014 Lok Sabha elections though the Presidential poll saw cracks in the Opposition alliance.

BJP, which backed the Presidential candidature of P A Sangma, whose name was propped up by AIADMK and BJD, is hopeful of a quid pro quo in the Vice Presidential poll while attempts are also on to contact YSR Congress and TDP, NDA sources said today. YSR Congress leader Jaganmohan Reddy`s mother YS Vijayamma had met NDA convener Sharad Yadav during her visit to the national capital sometime back.

"Ours is the leading Opposition alliance against the government. NDA has governments in 11 states. If people are fed up with the government of the day, they should be able to see an alternative," an NDA leader commented when asked as to why NDA chose to contest the Vice Presidential poll when UPA clearly seems to have the number to ensure it candidate Hamid Ansari`s victory. The leader said that there was also a need to correct the perception of a divide in the NDA, which was gaining ground after the different stand taken by the alliance parties during the Presidential election.

JD-U and Shiv Sena are supporting UPA nominee Pranab Mukherjee, while BJP and Akali Dal have thrown their weight behind Sangma in the Presidential race. But, the entire Opposition is united in supporting Jaswant Singh. An attempt is on in the NDA to reach out to a number of its erstwhile allies, while there is an understanding that Trinamool Congress, now a UPA ally, may not oppose UPA nominee Ansari for Mamata Banerjee`s own political reasons.