With three names proposed by the opposition parties as candidates for the forthcoming Presidential poll rejecting the offer, Trinamool Congress, with support from a couple of other political parties, might project someone from within the party in the opposition meeting convened by Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar on Tuesday.
Sources said that in all probability, Trinamool will propose the name of the party’s national Vice President and former Union minister Yashwant Sinha.
Instead of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, her nephew and Trinamool’s national General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee will attend the meeting convened by Pawar on Tuesday.
“Proposals have come from a couple of parties to propose the name of Yashwant Sinha as the probable opposition candidate for the Presidential poll. However, everything will depend on the proceedings of Tuesday’s meeting and depending on the names suggested by the other parties at the meeting,” a top leader of Trinamool Congress said on condition of anonymity.
Sinha, a retired IAS officer, had served first as the Union Finance Minister and then as the External Affairs Minister in the NDA government led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
He quit the BJP in 2018 before joining Trinamool Congress in 2021. He was appointed as the party’s national Vice President just before the Assembly elections last year.
On June 15, Trinamool had convened an opposition meeting in Delhi where the name of Sharad Pawar was proposed as the unanimous opposition candidate. However, Pawar had turned down the offer.
Mamata Banerjee then proposed the names of National Conference (NC) chief Farooq Abdulla and former West Bengal Governor Gopal Krishna Gandhi as the two probable names. However, both Abdulla and Gandhi have turned down the offer.