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No alliance with Congress or BJP, says Prafulla Mahanta
Amid speculations that the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) may look to ally with either the Congress party or the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the Lok Sabha elections, senior leader Prafulla Kumar Mahanta on Tuesday said that there will be no alliance with either the Congress or the BJP.
Mahanta, the regional party’s founder president and former Assam chief minister, said that the regional party, if needed, will single-handedly contest the Lok Sabha election.
There has been speculation that AGP might go with the Congress after the regional party broke ties with the BJP following the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.
“There is no point of going with Congress,” Mahanta said in Guwahati on Tuesday. He, however, said that they would prefer to go with like-minded smaller regional parties. “We have a meeting tomorrow. Let’s see what happens there,” Mahanta added.
There have been some reports of AGP having meeting with Congress leaders for the probable tie-up.
Mahanta, however, refuted of such meeting terming it either rumour or he is not aware of such developments. “If someone has done meeting, I’m not aware of this,” Mahanta said.
On the chances with the BJP for the Lok Sabha polls, Mahanta said that it was BJP national general secretary Ram Madhav who was insisting on the alliance.
The state unit of BJP has opposed the alliance with AGP after the regional party decided to scrap the tie opposing the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill. The AGP leaders also lobbied with other regional and national parties to take a stand against the bill. This has increased the gap between the two former allies.
On the other hand, on Monday Congress had indicated of alliance with the regional party. Senior Congress leader and former chief minister Tarun Gogoi had said that the doors are open for the AGP to form an alliance and stop BJP from coming to power.