Prez poll: TDP indicates support for Mukherjee

Hyderabad: Telugu Desam Party (TDP) today indicated it may support UPA candidate Pranab Mukherjee in next month`s Presidential election. TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu, whose party has 11 MPs (six Lok Sabha and five Rajya Sabha) and 86 MLAs, said “Abdul Kalam has opted out of the Presidential race and NDA appears to be backing former Speaker of Lok Sabha P A Sangma.

We can`t support NDA and Pranab Mukherjee is a senior politician”. He, however, said UPA should have evolved a consensus on Mukherjee`s candidature for the President`s post. “We will discuss the issue in the party and take a final call.” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had spoken to Naidu over phone before leaving on his foreign trip and sought TDP`s support for the UPA candidate.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and her Odisha counterpart Naveen Patnaik too had spoken to the former Andhra Pradesh CM seeking support for Sangma`s candidature. Sangma himself had met the TDP chief here last week and sought “support and blessings” for his candidature.