Congress and AGP trading charges over Trust vote

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Guwahati, Jul 24 (UNI) Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today lambasted the two AGP MPs for failing to participate in the July 22 confidence vote in Parliament on the Indo-US nuclear deal, while AGP president Brindabon Goswami accused the Congress of transforming Parliament into a ''market of MPs''.

Talking to mediapersons, Mr Gogoi said though the Asom Gana Parishad was shouting anti-Congress slogans all the time, their MPs should have taken the chance of addressing Parliament and explaining to the people why they were opposed to the deal.

The AGP has two members - Arun Sharma and Sarbananda Sonowal - with the party being a key member of the Third Front ''UNPA'' in the Lower House right from the its inception.

Mr Gogoi also criticised the AGP and UNPA for siding with Mayawati's Bahujan Samajwadi Party indulging in ''casteist politics''.

He said the victory in the confidence motion had exposed the hollowness of the BJP and Left parties and rubbished the allegation of horse-trading.

However, Mr Goswami termed Speaker Somnath Chattergee's role as ''partial'' during the trust vote. He alleged that the Congress had indulged in horse-trading to save the government and that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had called on the two AGP MPs a day before the motion to ask them to vote for the government. ''However, our MPs stuck to the party's decision of not voting for the government, unlike other bigger parties,'' he said.

Mr Goswami also maintained that the two AGP MPs were not allowed by the Speaker to speak during the debate though it was decided in the all-party meeting that all parties would be given a chance.


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