AGP to be united by Sunday

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Guwahati, Sep 19(UNI) The Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) is set to reunite on September 21 as the crucial General Council of the party is expected to endorse the long unification process.

''The process is going to be completed in the Sunday meeting.

Whatever differences there are will be sorted out in the general council meeting which is the supreme body,'' said AGP General Secretary Chandra Mohan Patowary.

He is widely tipped to be the next president of the party as there was intense pressure on incumbent Brindabon Goswami to give way to a new leadership while working president Phani Bhusan Chouhdury is expected to step aside for the sake of party unity.

''No one is above the party. Whatever the party will decide, I shall abide by that,'' said Mr Goswami, who is not enthusiastic about accepting former chief minister and party's founding president Prafulla Kumar Mahanta back in the fold. According to him, a negative image of Mr Mahanta would harm the party.

The scene for re-entry of expelled founder-president and two-time chief minister into the AGP continued to be mired in controversy with the party pushing back the final decision to the general council.

On the deliberations of last central executive meet he said, ''The committee on unification submitted its report and also enlisted the suggestions and recommendations of the splinter groups as well as AASU and AJYCP.'' Mr Goswami affirmed that the AGP would continue laying stress on the opinion of the organizations, like All Assam Students Union(AASU) and Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad(AJYCP) as these groups were involved with the formation of the party.

The AASU had been demanding that Mr Mahanta be left out of the unification process. However, the AGP leadership was talking through back door channel to AASU to stay away from the unification process.

On Mr Mahanta's re-entry, Mr Goswami said, ''The issue will definitely figure but a final decision can be taken only later.'' The central executive committee meeting had supported the unification move, though silence was maintained on the Mahanta issue.

The road for reconciliation and unification of all splinter groups--AGP(Progressive) of Mr Mahanta, Trinamool Gana Parishad(TGP) and Purbanchalia Lok Parishad(PLP)--had almost been cleared with the exception of the issue of Mr Mahanta.

UNI MT PL RL ND1558

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