While the scale is tilted towards a win for Pranab Mukherjee after several political parties, including those outside the UPA, supporting the seasoned politician and trouble shooter of the UPA II, the past few days's events soured the relations between Mamata Banerjee and the Congress.
Samajwadi Party (SP), which had aligned with Trinamool Congress to name former president A P J Abdul Kalam as their choice, also broke ranks to support the UPA's official choice.
Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief, Mayawati, addressing a press conference in Lucknow minutes after the formal announcement of Mukherjee’s name as the UPA nominee, pledged her party’s backing for him. “As both the PM and Gandhi have personally spoken to me, asking for my support, BSP endorses Mukherjee.”
There also were indications from the Bengal wing of CPI(M) today that the party would support Mukherjee.
Image: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee after his name was announced as United Progressive Alliance’s (UPA) Presidential candidate in New Delhi on Friday, 15 June, 2012
Text: IANS/IBNS/ PTI