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Pranab does not hold office of profit: P K Bansal

New Delhi, July 2 (PTI): The government on Monday denied former Lok Sabha Speaker P A Sangma’s allegation that Presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee holds an office of profit and so stands disqualified.

Sangma, who is also contesting the election for President had said earlier in the day that Mukherjee is the Chairman of the Indian Statistical Institute.

The government said Mukherjee had resigned as Chairman of the ISI a week before he filed his nomination in the President's election and does not hold any office of profit.

“He (Mukherjee) had resigned as Chairman, ISI, on June 20, a week before he filed his nominations,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister P K Bansal told PTI shortly after Sangma's camp filed a petition seeking cancellation of the UPA's candidate's nomination on grounds of holding an office of profit.

Bansal, the authorised representative of Mukherjee, said he and Home Minister P Chidambaram met Mukherjee after Sangma's claim and they were told by him of his resignation well in advance of filing the nomination.

“Pranab Mukherjee would be filing a written reply to the Returning Officer by 3 PM tomorrow,” the Parliamentary Affairs Minister said.

Bansal said Sangma's claim was factually incorrect, legally ill conceived and untenable.