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Independent legislator and Awami Ittehad Party (AIP) chairman Er Rasheed on Monday abstained from voting during the presidential election to protest the ‘betrayal’ by Pranab Mukherjee over hanging of Afzal Guru.

“I abstained from voting because Pranab Mukherjee didn’t keep his promise of not hanging Afzal Guru,” said Rasheed.

Rasheed said that he had submitted a memorandum to Mukherjee when he was in Kashmir for campaigning.

“He told me that he will take a sympathetic view. He [President] betrayed me and Kashmiri people,” said Rasheed.

Voting to elect the country's 14th President began on Monday morning.

All elected MPs and member of Legislative Assemblies are eligible to cast their vote to elect the successor of Pranab Mukherjee, who demits office on July 25.

The contest is between National Democratic Alliance (NDA) nominee Ram Nath Kovind and candidate of several major opposition parties Meira Kumar, who was former Lok Sabha Speaker.