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In a significant political development before the state Assembly elections, the Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) and Raijor Dal–two newly floated regional parties of Assam–on Thursday, announced a pre-poll alliance to take on the BJP-led ruling alliance and the Opposition ‘grand alliance’ (Mahajoot) in the crucial April elections.
AJP president Lurinjyoti Gogoi and general secretary Jagadish Bhuyan had a detailed two-hour-long discussion with Raijor Dal president and anti-CAA activist (currently serving a jail term) Akhil Gogoi at the Guwahati Medical College and Hospital (where the latter is undergoing treatment) and put to rest all speculations on the unification of the two regional parties.
“It is final… AJP and Raijor Dal will contest the Assembly polls together. We will make a formal announcement regarding the alliance soon,” Lurinjyoti told reporters after the meeting at the GMCH.
The AJP will reportedly contest all the 126 Assembly seats in the state, even as the issue concerning seat-sharing with Raijor Dal will be deliberated later.
Putting aside all murmurs and speculations regarding whether the regional party will join the Congress-led grand alliance, the AJP president said the time has come for the regional parties to stand up and lead the government in Assam.
“The elections this time will be a two-pronged contest–regional parties versus national parties on one block… as against the narrative floated by some that it would be a three-pronged contest (grand alliance led by Congress, the ruling alliance and regional parties),” Lurinjyoti said.
The Congress and AIUDF had kept its doors open for the regional parties to join the ‘grand alliance’ but the AJP had adopted a firm stance against such a prospect even as the picture, with one regional party (Anchalik Gana Morcha) in the grand alliance, was a tad hazy for some time.
However, now it remains to be seen whether the Hagrama Mohilary-led Bodoland People’s Front (BPF), which had been “sidelined” by its “senior ally” in the state, will join the regional parties and contest the elections together as a united regional party.
Unconfirmed sources said that there is every possibility of BPF coming on board with AJP and Raijor Dal to take on the national parties in the polls.
(Edited by Andre Kongri)