BJP-AGP ink pre-poll alliance

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday announced tat it had inked a crucial pre-poll tie-up with the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) for the parliamentary polls scheduled for April-May, the AGP will now be a part of the National Democratic Alliance led by BJP.

Working out a typical sharing agreement the BJP will contest eight seats from the eastern state of Assam while the AGP will contest six, said BJP president Rajnath Singh said in New Delhi.

In the elections to the state assembly the AGP will be the senior partner and contest more seats than the BJP, informed Singh.

A scheduled joint press conference on Wednesday by the AGP and the BJP in New Delhi, where the alliance was to be announced, was postponed indefinitely at the last minute.

Attempting to quell rift speculations the BJP attributed the postponement to a sudden death on a state BJP leader’s family. But, analysts said the parties had failed to reach a consensus over the Guwahati parliamentary seat.

The AGP is said to be against the candidature of BJP vice-president, Bijoya Chakraborty, from Guwahati while the BJP seems to be sticking to its stand of fielding Bijoya as the party candidate.

Alliance history between the AGP, which blames Bijoya of belittling AGP legislators, and the BJP, is far from inspiring, as a 2001 pre-assembly poll alliance between the two had ended in a bitter feud with both parties accusing the other of sabotage and betrayal.

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