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Congress versus Congress

Written by: Staff
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Tezpur, Apr 07(UNI) It is Congress versus Congress in Asom. Meet Mr Golam Osmani, three-time Congress MP from Barpeta, who is not only openly campaigning against the party but has also put up a block of 21 indepedents.

He is perhaps the only Congress MP in the country who has the audacity to do so and yet not face expulsion.

''I have already resigned from the party but my resignation has not been accepted by the High Command,'' said Mr Osmani, vowing to ensure defeat of all Congress candidates in the minority dominated areas of lower Asom.

''Except Dharmapur, not a single candidate will win from Congress in these lower Asom constituencies and that is my prediction,'' he threatened.

''I have been pressing for the protection and development of minorities. But instead, the Congress has been using them just for vote bank,'' he rued.

Congress sources said realising his ability to damage the party, party president Sonia Gandhi did try to accommodate his candidates in the list. ''But even after she tried, Digvijay Singh and Tarun Gogoi ensured that my candidates were not given tickets,'' he said.

This was, however, denied by Mr Singh who said that out of the 30 odd candidates he had supported, six of them had been accommodated in the party list.

''So what, I am opposing the Congress tooth and nail and will ensure their defeat,'' he asserted adding in the post poll scenario they would be the biggest player.

The Congress, unable to stop the erosion of minority vote bank, has asked them to quit the Lok Sabha. ''If he does not like the Congress why doesn't he resign from the Lok Sabha? If he resigns than he loses the membership. If we expel, he remains unattached member. He wants that,'' Mr Singh explained.

Mr Osmani, notorious for backdoor bargaining, has, however, said he would resign after the assembly polls but Congress sources informed that he would like to play the kingmaker's role after the elections as there is a prospect of hung assembly.

UNI MT PL RN 1447

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