Ending speculations over its alliance with the BJP, the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) on Wednesday said it will go together with it to the forthcoming state assembly polls to secure the interests of the people of Assam.
AGP chief Atul Bora made the alliance announcement on Wednesday after a meeting with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) top leadership, including the party's national president Amit Shah, at his New Delhi residence.
"We have been discussing the matter pertaining to the alliance with the BJP for a long time. Today, it was formalised during a meeting at the residence of BJP president Amit Shah," said Bora, adding the decision on the alliance with the BJP was taken to secure the identity of greater Assamese community in Assam and for a change.
"The Congress government in Assam under the leadership of Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has failed to fulfil the aspirations of the people of Assam since 2001. The people have been craving for a change and we also felt that by joining hands with the BJP, we could bring the change that the people of Assam are craving for," said Bora.
On seat sharing agreement with the BJP, Bora said: "Discussions are on to finalise the details about the seat sharing."
BJP's Assam unit president Sarbananda Sonowal, who was also present in the meeting, said that the two parties have in principle agreed to go to the polls together.
"It is evident that the BJP is going to form the next government in Assam. We have decided to contest the polls together with the AGP to save the state from the threat of the Congress and AIUDF," said Sonowal, adding the BPF, the Rabhas, the Tiwas have also decided to join hands with the BJP.
Minutes after the announcement in Delhi, BJP supporters in Assam took to the streets in different areas of the state, opposing the alliance.
BJP supporters in Sivsagar district of Assam vandalised the party office in the district, opposing the alliance with the AGP. Similar protests by the AGP supporters are also anticipated in the days to come.
Thousands of the AGP members, mostly grassroot party workers, had taken to streets in different parts of Assam a few days back and opposed any alliance between the AGP and the BJP in the state.