Prez poll: Trinamool asks its MPs, MLAs to reach Kolkata a day in advance

 The Trinamool Congress leadership has asked all its elected MLAs in West Bengal to ensure that they reach Kolkata by July 17 afternoon, a day before the Presidential polls. Similar instructions have been sent to the party MPs from both Houses of Parliament who have opted to cast their votes at the West Bengal Assembly premises.

Prez poll: Trinamool asks its MPs, MLAs to reach Kolkata a day in advance

Highly placed party sources said that this instruction has been given so that veterans in the party, who have prior experience in voting in the Presidential polls, update the newcomers in Parliamentary politics about the rules and procedures.

A senior party leader and a heavyweight member in state cabinet said on strict condition of anonymity that cancellation of a single vote of any Trinamool Congress MLA or MP will be a great embarrassment for the party. "The opposition candidate Yashwant Sinha was Trinamool Congress's national vice- president, who resigned from the post to contest for the Presidential polls. So, whatever might be the final results, we have to ensure all the votes from our camp go in favour of Sinha and not a single vote is cancelled," he said.

It is learnt that a four- member core team under the leadership of Trinamool Congress secretary general and state commerce & industries minister, Partha Chatterjee, has been formed who will supervise the entire process. The members of the core team have already started reaching out to the legislators from the districts and the MPs reminding them on this count.

As per the latest information available barring the Trinamool Congress Lok Sabha member from Asansol and actor-turned politician, Shatrughan Sinha, all the other elected Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha members of Trinamool Congress will vote at the state Assembly premises only.

Meanwhile, both BJP and Trinamool Congress have claimed cross-voting in their favours in the forthcoming Presidential polls. According to veteran political analyst and former registrar of Calcutta University, Rajagopal Dhar Chakraborty, even if cross-voting happens there is no option for any party to stop that. "Presidential Polls are conducted in secret ballots and party whips do not work here. So, it is not possible for anyone to know who has voted for whom," he said.

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