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Sangma’s pro-BJP stance causes rift with Pawar in NCP
Published on 29 Mar. 2009 12:42 AM IST
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Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) appears to have split into two groups - one led by Sharad Pawar and the other faction headed by former Lok Sabha speaker Purno Agitok Sangma. While NCP leader Pawar has announced his party’s decision not to have any truck with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Sangma’s public statement that he will campaign for some BJP candidates has sparked speculation that the party may be divided into two camps. ‘The party stand is very clear.... there is no question of any alliance with the BJP,’ Sangma told journalists in Guwahati two days ago. In the same vein, the stocky Garo tribal leader from Meghalaya announced his rather surprise decision to campaign for some BJP candidates. ‘I am campaigning for some BJP candidates like Khiren Rijiju (Arunachal Pradesh) and in Gorkhaland with S.S. Ahluwalia (BJP in-charge of West Bengal).... They are my friends and I have the right to campaign for them,’ Sangma said. ‘I don’t think there is any contradiction in my campaigning for my friends.... Badruddin Ajmal (leader of Asom United Democratic Front) is also a friend and I will campaign for him even if he joins the Congress. There is nothing wrong in that,’ Sangma said.

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