GUWAHATI, March 3 - Bharat Chandra Narah, press adviser to Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, today claimed that the electoral alliance between the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would benefit the Congress in the long run.
Talking to this newspaper, Narah said that the way the AGP entered into an alliance with the BJP has confused the common people as to the sincerity of both the parties to serve the interests of the masses.
The alliance is not based on any ideology, nor is it aimed at rendering any service to Assam and its people. The AGP was lured into this alliance by a section of its leaders for promoting their personal careers by securing election funds from the BJP. In the process they took the help of a new BJP leader who once proclaimed plague in the AGP camp. This leader had also claimed that the AGP headquarters at Ambari would be turned into a marriage hall soon.
The AGP leaders should have demanded an honourable treatment and share from the BJP leaders. The AGP should have claimed that it should be given 63 seats considering the fact that it formed the government in the State on two occasions and even in the present Assembly it has got 10 MLAs, against the five MLAs of the BJP. But its leaders were satisfied only with 24 seats, and for that too they had to beg from the BJP.
Significantly, the AGP was clamouring that it would go for a Left and democratic alliance and since the very inception of the BJP-led government at the Centre, the regional party had been taking recourse to agitational programmes against the Central government, dubbing it anti-Assam.
The AGP should now clarify as to what its stand is on the issues concerning the Assam Accord, mega dam projects, Special State Category status to Assam, the North-East Industrial and Investment Promotion Policy (NEIIPP) and diversion of Assam rivers to other parts of the country, on which the BJP has quite a different stand.
Moreover, the BJP-led Central government has announced an allocation of only Rs 50 crore for the Bodoland Territorial Administrative Districts (BTAD), against the tall talks of the BJP leaders that the Centre would allocate an amount of Rs 1,000 crore to the BTAD, Narah said, adding, this alone proves how credible the BJP is.
Meanwhile, the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) today described the AGP-BJP electoral alliance as a proof of the tacit understanding between the two parties during the secret killing days. This has also exposed the hollowness of the AGP brand of secularism.
There is a justified apprehension that the AGP-BJP alliance would once again take Assam back to the pre-2001 gory, chaotic days.
The alliance has also revealed the fact that the BJP lacks the confidence to win 84-plus seats in the Assembly elections. Now, it has come to light that it is prepared to offer fight in 52 Assembly seats and has thus admitted defeat much before the actual fray has started.
Moreover, the APCC said in its statement signed by its vice president Ripun Bora, that the decision to forge the alliance was taken at the behest of the new-BJP leaders, sidelining those leaders who have built the BJP in Assam bit by bit.