Hurt BJP members to float party

BJP's ticket aspirants, who felt left out owing to their party's alliance with Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), have decided to float a new party under the name Trinamul BJP.

By RITUPALLAB SAIKIA in Golaghat
  • Published 5.03.16
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Golaghat, March 4: BJP's ticket aspirants, who felt left out owing to their party's alliance with Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), have decided to float a new party under the name Trinamul BJP.

With just a month left for the two-phase Assembly polls on April 4 and 11, the move is considered significant as the AGP-BJP tie-up was announced yesterday.

According to sources, the move was taken after consultation with the grassroots workers of the party who were dissatisfied with the alliance. The party will field candidates in the 24 Assembly seats which were given to AGP because of the alliance. The modalities are being discussed and within a day or two it will be formally launched.

Meanwhile, AGP general secretary Ramendra Narayan Kalita said the party would contest 26 Assembly constituencies (and not 24 as announced by BJP leader and Union telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad in New Delhi yesterday).

Kalita, who was a part of the AGP delegation that went to Delhi to negotiate with the BJP leadership, told The Telegraph after returning from Delhi today, that apart from those 24 constituencies, the party will also field its candidate in two more constituencies, which are Barama and Kalaigaon in BTAD.

Another AGP leader said on condition of anonymity that their party is likely to put up candidates in another couple of seats where they would have a "friendly contest" with their ally, the BJP.

"We are not against the BJP. Therefore, we have decided to abstain from contesting election in those Assembly constituencies which were given to BJP. The grassroots workers of booth, panchayat and block level have already started to resign from their respective posts in all these 24 seats," said the source.

According to information received, the candidates of Trinamul BJP will be Sankar Prasad Rai in Bongaigon, Biswajit Phukan in Sarupathar, Rebo Gogoi in Bokakhat, Jitu Goswami in Barhampur and Jonardan Hazarika in Amguri.

When contacted, Sankar Prasad Rai told The Telegraph that while a move is on to float Trinamul BJP, he has called a meeting with supporters from his constituency tomorrow to take a final decision. Debajit Bora, president of BJP's Golaghat district committee, said till now he has no information about such a development and the party will definitely take appropriate disciplinary action against those for violating the constitution of the party.

In another development, BJP workers ransacked and set fire to furniture at a party office in Chaygaon today to protest against giving the constituency to the AGP. They also threatened to put up independent candidates against the party's official nominee.

If this split were to happen, BJP would witness a re-run of 2001 when the party split following an alliance with the AGP. The disgruntled members had then formed Assam BJP. The BJP-AGP alliance had lost the elections.

The AGP, too, had split when its general secretary Bhrigu Kumar Phukan alongwith Dinesh Goswami, Brindaban Goswami, Pulakesh Barua and others formed the Natun Asom Gana Parishad. This faction came back to the party fold in 1992.

In 2000, senior party leader Atul Bora moved away along with Pulakesh Barua and formed Trinamul Gana Parishad.

After his expulsion from party in 2005 Prafulla Kumar Mahanta then formed his own party, Asom Gana Parishad (Progressive) and finally on 14 October 2008 all breakaway groups reconciled in one umbrella at its birthplace in Golaghat.