Presidential polls: Mamata Banerjee to visit Delhi this month


Kolkata, June 11 : West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will be on a three-day visit to New Delhi this month and in all probability, her scheduled visit will be from June 14-16. According to sources in the state cabinet, the visit will be basically a preparatory mission so that the chief minister can take a lead role in ensuring that a unanimous opposition candidate can be fielded against BJP's candidate. The presidential poll is scheduled on July 18 and the counting will take place on July 21. A senior member of the state cabinet, on condition of anonymity, said that the purpose of the mission is basically to consider some names which can be proposed as a unanimous opposition candidate. "There might be discussion on whether there is a possibility for the opposition parties to announce the name of their candidate before BJP announces their nominee," he said. He also said that preliminary discussions between Mamata Banerjee and Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav have already been made about the probable names of candidates. "In her two- day New Delhi tour she is expected to hold meetings with leaders of other anti-BJP forces," the member of the state cabinet said. However, he refused to name those opposition leaders with whom communication had been made for fixing meetings with Mamata Banerjee during her New Delhi tour. The fact that Mamata Banerjee will go all out in playing a leading role in forging opposition unity on the issue of presidential polls was made clear by her in March this year. Soon after BJP clinched victory in the assembly polls in four out of five states, including Uttar Pradesh, Mamata Banerjee said on the floor of the assembly that the game is not over yet since BJP will not be able to get its candidate elected in the presidential polls with support from other parties. /IANS


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