New Delhi, Jul 16: With the UPA coming out with their candidate for the Vice President post namely Hamid Ansari, the NDA has decided to put up a fight and is all set to contest UPA's choice Ansari. According to sources, the NDA is likely to name senior BJP leader and former Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh as their Vice Presidential nominee.
The VP poll scheduled to be held on Aug 7 will see a divided NDA with ally Janata Dal (United) rooting for Sharad Yadav as the VP candidate. The NDA is expected to meet today to decide on the candidate it will field against the UPA's nominee Hamid Ansari in the VP poll.
The BJP is understood to have fielded a candidate against Ansari apparently irked with Ansari's conduct during the Lokpal debate in the Rajya Sabha last December. The anti-corruption Lokpal Bill was cleared by the Lok Sabha last year during the Winter Session, while in the Rajya Sabha, where the government had no chances of winning, the BJP and other parties had moved as many as 200 amendments. The Opposition had hoped for a discussion and vote in spite of time running out, being the last day of the winter session of Parliament. Ansari did not permit this, leading to a major proposal getting defeated.
With Ansari enjoying the same support that Pranab Mukherjee will get for the President's post, the chances are high that Ansari might end up having a second term in the Vice-President's office. The numbers clearly seem to be going in the UPAs favour with the Congress and its allies having 444 MPs, more than 396 votes they needed to get Ansari his second term. This is beside the Trinamool Congress' votes.
The NDA on the other hand has the support of 236 MPs, excluding the vote share of Janata Dal (United), the AIADMK, the Shiv Sena and the BJD.