Top leaders of the Left parties will meet in New Delhi on Thursday to take a decision on the issue of supporting the United Progressive Alliance Presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee.

Prakash Karat, Sitaram Yechury and S. Ramachandran Pillai (Communist Party of India (Marxist)), A.B. Bardhan, Sudhakar Reddy and D. Raja (Communist Party of India), Debabrata Biswas and G. Deverajan (Forward Bloc) and T.J. Chandrachoodan (Revolutionary Socialist Party) will attend the meeting, Left sources said.

Left parties account for around 51,000 votes in the electoral college of 10.98 lakh votes.

Prior to the meeting of Left parties, the CPI(M) Polit Bureau is also meeting in the capital where the issue of Presidential election will be discussed among other subjects.

The Left parties have maintained a suspense on the issue of support to the UPA nominee, saying they were not bound to back the ruling coalition’s candidate.

“We are not bound, we are not part of the alliance of the Congress and the UPA that we have to support anybody they propose,” CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat has said.

The CPI(M) had earlier decided to consult secular and Left parties before finalising a stand on supporting a Presidential candidate.

Top leadership of the UPA has already spoken to Mr. Karat and Mr. Bardhan seeking their support for Mr. Mukherjee.

The Presidential poll, slated next month, was also discussed in the recent CPI(M) Central Committee meeting, which authorised the Polit Bureau to formulate the party’s strategy on the election after discussing the issue with other Left and like-minded secular parties.

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