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Opp efforts on for consensus candidate


GUWAHATI, Jan 27 � Last-minute negotiations continue in the Opposition camp in the State to reach consensus for putting up a candidate for the Rajya Sabha polls scheduled for February 7.

While the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been vague in its stand, leaders of the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) were holding huddles till the filing of this report to decide on the course of action.

January 28 (tomorrow) is the last date for filing of nomination papers for the three Rajya Sabha seats, which are up for grabs. Terms of three MPs - Bhubaneswar Kalita (Congress), Birendra Prasad Baishya (AGP) and Biswajit Daimary (Bodoland Peoples' Front) - are slated to end on April 9.

AIUDF sources said senior party leaders including working president Dr Aditya Langthasa and general secretary Aminul Islam held talks with AGP leaders during the course of the day.

It is said that the AGP has proposed the name of senior journalist Haidar Hussain as a joint candidate of the Opposition parties and AIUDF is willing to back the idea.

However, the AIUDF (18 MLAs) and AGP (9 MLAs) do not have enough strength of their own to have anybody elected without the support of the BJP (5 MLAs).

A senior AIUDF leader told The Assam Tribune, �we are still hopeful of a consensus. However, if nothing comes out of our effort we may declare our own candidate to ensure that all our 18 MLAs remain united.�

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