Asom Gana Parishad joins NDA

The BJP on Thursday announced a seat sharing arrangement with the Asom Gana Parishad, saying that it will contest eight of the 14 Lok Sabha seats in Assam while the regional party will field candidates in rest of the six constituencies.

"This alliance will help the NDA not only in Assam, but in all the 24 Lok Sabha constituencies in the entire Northeastern region," BJP's prime ministerial candidate L K

Advani told reporters in New Delhi.

Announcing the alliance, BJP President Rajnath Singh said while the BJP will contest eight seats, the AGP would field its nominees in the remaining six seats.

Though the BJP would be the major partner for the Lok Sabha elections, the AGP would be the "senior partner" for the assembly polls to be held simultaneously, Singh said.

Advani, flanked by NDA chairman Sharad Yadav and AGP President Chandra Mohan Patowary, said the NDA had been "successful" in breaking the four-decade long rule of a single party (Congress) and establishing a "bipolar polity".

"We have not been able to convert the polity into a two-party system but have ended the single party rule of four decades. The AGP's joining the NDA would go a long way in stopping further fragmentation of our polity," Advani said.

The AGP was in the NDA when it was in power. However, the party from Assam parted ways after the Congress-led UPA won the 2004 elections.

In his remarks, Patowary claimed "what will happen in Assam will happen in the country. We are hopeful that will see Advaniji become the Prime Minister and under his leadership, the problems of the country will be resolved."

Observing that Assam was "garlanded" by foreign countries, he said the state had become a "transit point for 'jihadis' and extremists" and blamed the UPA government for failing to take care of the problems of the people of his state.

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