Agartala, June 16 (IANS) United Progressive Alliance (UPA) presidential candidate and union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee telephoned Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar, who is also a Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) politburo member, and sought support of Left parties, an official said Saturday.
Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura (INPT), a mostly tribal supported regional party and a Congress ally, extended its support Saturday to the UPA's presidential candidate.
"Mukherjee called Sarkar Friday and sought the support of Left parties to his candidature. Sarkar told Mukherjee that the CPI-M leadership would take their decision at a meeting scheduled next week, and would communicate the same," a senior official of the chief minister's secretariat told IANS.
A CPI-M leader, on condition of anonymity, told IANS that the party's 49 legislators and three members of parliament from Tripura are in favour of Mukherjee. "However, our politburo members will take the final decision within a day or two," he added.
Mukherjee's call to Sarkar came immediately after the UPA announced his candidature for the country's highest constitutional office.
The Congress' electoral ally INPT, which has a member in the Tripura assembly, has also welcomed the nomination of Mukherjee in the presidential election.
"We will put our vote in favour of Mukherjee," INPT president and the party's lone legislator Bijoy Kumar Hrangkhawl told IANS.
The Tripura Congress leadership too has expressed its joy over the announcement of Mukherjee's candidature.
"Pranab-da is not only the country's rock-hard, experienced and meritorious leader, but is also a guardian and close well-wisher of the Tripura Congress leadership," state opposition leader Ratan Lal Nath told IANS.
Mukherjee was Friday named the UPA's candidate for the presidential poll, and has received support from many parties and individuals.