Refraining from making any charges against his rival Pranab Mukherjee, presidential candidate PA Sangma on Sunday recalled his friendship with late Biju Patnaik and was optimistic of a victory like in 1969 when VV Giri had defeated official Congress candidate.
He hoped that the MPs and the MLAs will vote according to their conscience and not on party line. Sangma said since there could not be any restriction, whip or any written direction in the election, he was hopeful of getting support of many MLAs and MPs. The former Lok Sabha Speaker said his prospects in the poll are very good. “This election is not being fought on political party lines and is above political parties,” he told mediapersons before leaving for Guwahati.
Sangma met the BJD MPs and MLAs at the headquarters of the regional political party here. He met the BJP MLAs after lunch at Naveen Nivas with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.
“Eighteen political parties have given commitment to support me. Some parties are likely to announce their decision in a day or two, while others may not announce at all. We hope they will vote for us,” the former Lok Sabha speaker added.
On the Trinamool Congress, Sangma said Mamata Banerjee had already decided to take part in the poll, but is yet to decide whom to vote. She will take a decision on this within a day or two, he said. Asked whether the Trinamool Congress will support him, Sangma said, “I hope so.”
Explaining how he is going to win the polls though he has only 38 per cent support in the electoral college, Sangma said, “what you see is only black and white. Things are different because there can be no restriction on voters, he said.
This election is witnessing a different political formation where the Congress-Communists, Mulayam-Mayawati, BJD-BJP are voting for one candidate. While JD(U) and Shiv Sena have disassociated from the NDA in this poll, the TMC had also expressed its reservation over the UPA’s candidate, he pointed out.