From our Staff Correspondent
SHILLONG, July 17: Notwithstanding the Trinamool Congress decision to support Pranab Mukherjee for the Presidential polls, Purno Sangma has not lost his optimism to occupy the sprawling Raisina Hills. A close aide of Sangma who is involved in the campaigning said on Tuesday that the former Lok Sabha member is unruffled by Mamata Banerjee’s decision.
“We continue to believe in miracles and the conscience votes of the members of the Electoral College to ensure our candidate’s victory”, stated the aide on condition of anonymity over phone. Terming Mamata Banerjee’s decision to extend support to Pranab Mukherjee as a ‘compulsion’ rather than being out of a conscientious one, the aide said that the Trinamool Chief’s open declaration “of having no alternative option” is indicative of the UPA blackmailing tactics. The close aide attributed to West Bengal bargain for central grants in the past one year for the hesitant support to Mukherjee.
Going by the statistics, the chances of Sangma making into Raisina hills has dwindled further after the Trinamool Congress’ decision on Wednesday, but that hasn’t detered the former Lok Sabha speaker from losing his faith.
“Sangma is upbeat because he started with 0 per cent chances, climbed up to 6 per cent and presently the winnibility factor stands at 32 per cent”, stated the aide and campaign manager, adding, “ the conscience votes will determine the outcome of the Presidential polls”.
The former Tura MP has strongly banked on the conscience votes during his campaign, especially through his appeal that no one will be detected for cross voting that is cast through a secret ballot. Asserting that PA Sangma contested the Presidential elections for the pride of the tribals and the Northeast, the campaign manger further said that the independent contender for the highest post in the country is not a pessimist. “Many UPA MPs and MLAs have vouched their support and the D-day will prove the same”.
Mentionably, PA Sangma kept on harping on the constitutional norms that conscience voting by the MPs and MLAs will not be detected, besides enlightening that no party issue a whip on the Presidential polls.