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BJP in a fix over State LS candidates

By Spl Correspondent
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NEW DELHI, March 19 - Under pressure, the BJP may change a few of the candidates for the ensuing Lok Sabha elections in Assam. Sitting Mangaldai MP Ramen Deka may now be the new candidate for Guwahati Lok Sabha seat, sources in the party said.

The BJP parliamentary board, which met last week, had dropped five sitting MPs from the party�s probable list of candidates for Assam. While the party has not finalised any candidate for Tezpur seat after rejecting State minister Himanta Biswa Sarma�s candidature, the names of at least two BJP leaders � Rajen Borthakur and Ritubaran Sharma � are doing the rounds. The party is also yet to find a replacement for Union Minister of State Rajen Gohain in the Nagaon seat.

Sources disclosed that the RSS has been putting pressure on the party to nominate Ramen Deka, who was earlier dropped by the parliamentary board as a candidate for Mangaldai, and adjust him in the Guwahati seat. Deka, however, said though he has heard about it, he has not been contacted in this regard by the party leadership. The BJP had earlier nominated Queen Oja for the Guwahati seat.

Meanwhile, Congress sources said that after an intensive search, the party has zeroed in on Bolin Bordoloi, son of Lokapriya Gopinath Bardoloi, for the Guwahati seat. Bolin Bordoloi was a top executive of the Tata Tea before his retirement.

Bhubaneswar Kalita interacting with newsmen said that he was given the option of contesting from either Guwahati or Mangaldai seats. �Now, I have decided to contest from Mangaldai. Both seats for me are same and I had represented Guwahati earlier. I was away from Lok Sabha election for the last two rounds but people of Mangaldai forced me to contest from the seat this time,� he said.

�I will file my nomination on Monday and tomorrow I am leaving for Mangaldai to start my campaign. We will highlight the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill and the ruling party has already announced that if they come to power that they will again table the Bill. This is a challenge for the people of Assam... we have accepted the challenge and will oppose the Bill,� he asserted.

Asked whether the AGP-BJP alliance posed a threat to Congress, he said that both the parties have strategic understanding. �They never parted company and it seems, the AGP was never serious about the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill,� Kalita said.

In another poll related development, the CPI(M) has decided to field two candidates from Assam. They are Kanak Gogoi who will contest from Jorhat and Arup Kalita who will fight it out in Lakhimpur.

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BJP in a fix over State LS candidates

NEW DELHI, March 19 - Under pressure, the BJP may change a few of the candidates for the ensuing Lok Sabha elections in Assam. Sitting Mangaldai MP Ramen Deka may now be the new candidate for Guwahati Lok Sabha seat, sources in the party said.

The BJP parliamentary board, which met last week, had dropped five sitting MPs from the party�s probable list of candidates for Assam. While the party has not finalised any candidate for Tezpur seat after rejecting State minister Himanta Biswa Sarma�s candidature, the names of at least two BJP leaders � Rajen Borthakur and Ritubaran Sharma � are doing the rounds. The party is also yet to find a replacement for Union Minister of State Rajen Gohain in the Nagaon seat.

Sources disclosed that the RSS has been putting pressure on the party to nominate Ramen Deka, who was earlier dropped by the parliamentary board as a candidate for Mangaldai, and adjust him in the Guwahati seat. Deka, however, said though he has heard about it, he has not been contacted in this regard by the party leadership. The BJP had earlier nominated Queen Oja for the Guwahati seat.

Meanwhile, Congress sources said that after an intensive search, the party has zeroed in on Bolin Bordoloi, son of Lokapriya Gopinath Bardoloi, for the Guwahati seat. Bolin Bordoloi was a top executive of the Tata Tea before his retirement.

Bhubaneswar Kalita interacting with newsmen said that he was given the option of contesting from either Guwahati or Mangaldai seats. �Now, I have decided to contest from Mangaldai. Both seats for me are same and I had represented Guwahati earlier. I was away from Lok Sabha election for the last two rounds but people of Mangaldai forced me to contest from the seat this time,� he said.

�I will file my nomination on Monday and tomorrow I am leaving for Mangaldai to start my campaign. We will highlight the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill and the ruling party has already announced that if they come to power that they will again table the Bill. This is a challenge for the people of Assam... we have accepted the challenge and will oppose the Bill,� he asserted.

Asked whether the AGP-BJP alliance posed a threat to Congress, he said that both the parties have strategic understanding. �They never parted company and it seems, the AGP was never serious about the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill,� Kalita said.

In another poll related development, the CPI(M) has decided to field two candidates from Assam. They are Kanak Gogoi who will contest from Jorhat and Arup Kalita who will fight it out in Lakhimpur.