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NPF offers unconditional support to UPA
Correspondent Kohima, May 19 (NPN):
Published on 20 May. 2009 1:10 AM IST
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After winning the Lok Sabha and four assembly seats in Nagaland at the recently concluded elections, the NPF added two more BJP legislators through a merger on May 18 to its kitty and increased its strength to 32 in a house of 60. The DAN has 40 legislators including two from the NCP and six other independents.The timing of the merger was timed to coincide before the formation of the new Congress-led UPA government at the Centre, Congress sources said. Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio had dashed to Delhi on Monday to lobby for aligning DAN with the UPA alliance by offering unconditional support of the lone MP in the formation of the new ministry at Delhi. It was also reported that NPCC president K.V Pusa had also air dashed to Delhi the same day purportedly to impress upon the UPA not to accept the NPF entry into the UPA alliance. The tussle between the NPF and state Congress came from the opposition’s resentment over the vitriolic tirade against the party and its leaders during recent elections by the NPF leaders, sources said. Congress sources allege that the NPF offer was purely to sustain the party’s rule and stranglehold in the state to the detriment of the Congress. The sources also speculate that the merger of the BJP with the NPF was also meant to impress upon the Congress leaders in Delhi that the NPF has no truck with the BJP. BJP rejects merger Meanwhile, those still in the BJP Nagaland expressed surprise over reported merger of the state BJP with the NPF. Rejecting the merger issue, state BJP general secretary Vikehielie Victor claimed that the party was “intact and strong like a rock and will not suffer from self interest divisive politics”. Victor in a press statement pointed out the BJP is a pre-poll alliance of the DAN government in Nagaland and so “the question of merger does not arise”. He said those who left the party, irrespective of holding posts under it did so in their individual capacity and that the state BJP would take all necessary and corrective measures at the earliest to defend and protect the party. When contacted M Chuba senior leader and former president BJP played down the merger saying it would not have any impact and asserted that the BJP state unit was still in existence. “This is my house, I have built this house and I will remain the party”, he said. Chuba and claimed that the BJP has 116 MPs in the Lok Sabha and ruling six states. BJP National Council Member (NCM) Johny G Rengma told over phone from Delhi that that he was not part of the breakaway group and reiterated that he was still in BJP. Johny disclosed he had already informed the national leaders about the latest situation of BJP in the state.

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