“Asom Gana Parishad Given 1 Seat With Winning Chance”: Himanta Sarma

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Sunday said that the BJP has kept its assurance of giving at least one Lok Sabha seat with ‘winning chance’ to its alliance partner Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) so that the regional party has representation in the lower House once again after 15 years.

He also said the BJP will lend complete support in ensuring victory of candidates belonging to its allies, while also exhorting the partners to give similar backing to its nominees.

The BJP, which leads a five-party coalition government in the state, is contesting in 11 seats, leaving two seats for AGP and one for United People’s Party Liberal (UPPL), out of 14 seats in the state.

Two other allies, Ganashakti and Rabha Joutha Mancha, are not fielding candidates in the Parliamentary elections.

Addressing a meeting of party workers at AGP headquarters here, Mr Sarma said, “We had assured the AGP during talks on seat sharing that it will be given at least one seat with winning chance. We were aware that the AGP did not have an MP in the Lok Sabha since 2009.”

The AGP is contesting in Barpeta and Dhubri constituencies, which have incumbent MPs from the opposition Congress and AIUDF respectively.

Though the chief minister did not specify the constituency with AGP’s higher winning possibility at the meeting, he has stated previously that Dhubri is the only seat in the state that the ruling alliance may not bag.

“To win Barpeta and Dhubri, the AGP workers have to take upon themselves a special responsibility. The BJP leaders will also contribute their best as per strategy drawn out to help the candidates there,” Mr Sarma said.

While assuring complete support from BJP leaders and workers to AGP and UPPL candidates, he also urged the AGP to return the gesture and ensure that its party machinery works for the allies in the other constituencies.

Claiming that the atmosphere nationwide was conducive for a third successive term for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Mr Sarma said, “Every election is fought in a different context and background. This time, the election is on development, progress, on establishing Bharat as a ‘vishwa guru’ and Assam as among top states of the country.” Earlier in the day, the chief minister had attended a meeting with BJP workers of the Barpeta constituency in Bongaigaon, and another with BJP, AGP and UPPL members in Kokrajhar. 

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