The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday once again allied with the Asom Gana Parishad in Assam, for the Lok Sabha elections in the state. The Asom Gana Parishad had quit its alliance with the BJP in January due to its opposition to the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.
The bill seeks to amend the Citizenship Act of 1955 in order to grant citizenship to Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan if they have lived in India for six years, even if they do not possess the necessary documents. The bill was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8.
However, the BJP and Asom Gana Parishad finalised a tie-up on Tuesday following a meeting at the regional party’s president Atul Bora’s residence in Guwahati, Northeast Now reported. BJP leader Ram Madhav, flanked by Assam BJP minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, made the announcement late on Tuesday.
“After discussion, BJP and AGP have decided to work together in the coming Parliament election in Assam to defeat Congress,” Madhav told reporters, according to NDTV. “It was a hectic day of parlays in the North East.” The BJP general secretary also tweeted that the Bodoland People’s Front will be the third partner in the alliance.
The BJP also finalised alliances with the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura in the state, the Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party in Nagaland and the National People’s Party in Meghalaya.
“The BJP, NPP, NDPP, AGP and BPF will fight together in Assam, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh with the mission of defeating Congress party at the hustings,” Madhav wrote on Facebook. “In Tripura, the BJP will fight the elections together with IPFT, our alliance partner. In Sikkim, our alliance will be with SKM, the main Opposition party.”
“While the Opposition is still talking and talking about Mahagatbandhan, we already have ours in place in the North East and the rest of the country,” the BJP leader added. “The National Democratic Alliance is a much stronger coalition today than before.” Madhav claimed the BJP-led alliance will win 22 out of 25 seats in the Northeast.
The 2019 General Elections will be held from April 11 to May 19, with the results announced on May 23. In Assam, the polls will be held in three phases – on April 11, April 18 and April 23.