AGP ''undecided'' on joining NDA

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Guwahati, Oct 18 (UNI) The Asom Gana Parisahd (AGP), the state's largest regional party, is yet ''undecided'' on joining the NDA even as the party is busy cobbling together a seat-sharing arrangement of non-Congress parties in the state ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, with the BJP already on board.

''The talks with various parties are heading in the right direction and we are extremely hopeful and optimistic,'' AGP president Chandra Mohan Patowary said here.

He will be meeting Asom United Democratic Front (AUDF) chief Badruddin Ajmal this evening ahead of the AUDF's executive meet later in the evening.

The AUDF, which has made inroads into a major chunk of minority support of the Congress, had startled by winning 10 seats in the state Assembly elections in 2006, the very year of its formation.

Regarding the AUDF's and Left parties' refusal to have anything to do with the BJP, the AGP chief said, ''They have their differences and we are fully aware of it.

''But we are trying to arrive at a common meeting point and we are hopeful of reaching AT it,'' he added.

''The concerns and problems of the state would be our top priority in bringing the parties together,'' he said.

Reiterating that it was a seat-sharing arrangement with the BJP, Mr Patowary said, ''There has been no alliance and we want to clarify it once again.'' He informed that the BJP had invited the AGP to join the NDA but the party was still undecided over it.

''As the party chief, I have been invited to participate in the NDA meeting where Om Prakash Chautala and his INLD will join the NDA, but I am not sure of attending it,'' he added.

The AGP, under its former president Brindabon Goswami, had been an active supporter of the third front UNPA but with the other UNPA proponents disbanding and Mr Goswami removed from power, the AGP is inching towards the NDA.


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