The BJP and AGP, which forged an electoral alliance in Assam more than a week ago, are busy trying to contain rebellion within their ranks as disgruntled leaders, who are opposed to the tie-up, have named candidates against the official party nominees in several districts.
A group of rebel BJP leaders has formed an outfit called Trinamool BJP and named candidates for the 24 assembly seats which the BJP has allotted to the AGP.
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Similarly, AGP rebels, led by party’s youth wing chief Sunil Rajkonwar and former Chabua MLA Bhaben Barua, have formed AGP Anchalikatabadi and decision to field candidates in at least 45 constituencies.
Meanwhile, former AGP president Thaneswar Boro has announced his decision to contest as an Independent from Rangiya. Boro, however, has appealed to AGP rebels not to field candidates in the 24 constituencies where AGP is contesting. “The regional party should not be disturbed,” he said.
The BJP is also struggling to pacify its rebel leaders. Mridul Dutta, who quit as state BJP vice-president, said: “The BJP is now in the grip of corrupt former Congress leaders, unpopular AGP leaders and a bunch of criminals.” He is planning to contest from Golaghat.
The Hindu Yuva-Chhatra Parishad (HYCP) has also accused the BJP of accepting money in lieu of party tickets. “The BJP, which was so long been talking about ousting the corrupt Congress, has named a number of people with criminal background,” said HYCP state president Balen Baishya.
BJP state president and Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal, however, described the growing discontentment in the party as a “temporary” phase. “This is a natural temporary phenomenon. There is so much enthusiasm among BJP workers. I’m sure this dissent will soon die down and all BJP workers will work for ensuring victory of the party,” he said.
AGP president Atul Bora also said that most of the disgruntled leaders, barring a few, have renewed their resolve to defeat the Congress. “We had consulted all sections of our leaders while working out the alliance with the BJP. Those who are still angry should come back to the party fold in the next two or three days,” he said.
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