GUWAHATI, May 1 - The All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) has said that it has not entered into negotiations with other parties for formation of a �third front� in Assam and added that the party�s own strategy for the post-result period will only be firmed up after May 19.
�There have been many rumours and speculations during recent days about possibility of the AIUDF entering into a tie-up with the AGP or some other party to form a non-Congress, non-BJP government at Dispur. But we have not held any such discussions with any other party or individual leaders of other parties,� a senior AIUDF leader told The Assam Tribune.
He added, �Our core committee meeting will be held on the evening of May 19 once results of the Assembly polls are out. That meeting will decide our course of action for the future.�
Regarding reports about the party�s willingness to support a government headed by former chief minister and AGP leader PK Mahanta in cohort with Congress, the leader said, �Such reports are false. We have not held any discussion with Mahanta. AGP has formed an alliance with BJP. We had called for a grand alliance of all non-BJP parties in the months leading up to the elections, but neither the Congress nor the AGP reciprocated. So now there is no question of us helping the AGP form a government, with outside support of Congress.�
He said that while the AIUDF has publicly claimed that it will win at least 40-45 seats in the polls, the actual numbers are likely to be less.
�We are in contention in around 30-35 seats. In some of them, we are in tough contest with the Congress. The results will depend on which way the minority vote has swung,� said the leader.
Another AIUDF office-bearer said, �This is not the right time to discuss government formation. Our grand alliance formula was rejected by major parties in Assam and so we had to tie-up with JD (U) and RJD. We will first look at the mandate which we receive on May 19, calculate our strength and then decide on the post-poll strategy.�
Asked how many seats the party is expecting to win, he said, �It will be more than 2011 when we had 18 MLAs. But in many constituencies of lower Assam, we are neck-and-neck with the Congress.�
The AIUDF had contested from 69 constituencies in 2006 and won in 10 seats. In the 2011 polls, the party had fielded candidates in 76 constituencies and won from 18.
This time, the party contested in 71 seats and also left some others to its allies, RJD and JD (U).