Free Press Journal

Seeking BJP support for our candidates: NE regional front


New Delhi: A newly-formed regional front of parties from the northeast today said it is in consultations with BJP for support to its candidates for the Lok Sabha polls.

Former Lok Sabha Speaker P A Sangma, whose National People’s Party (NPP) is part of the North-East Regional Political Front, however, said that the grouping will have no truck with the UPA.

“Negotiations are going on with BJP for its support to our candidates. But there is no question of joining UPA as Congress has failed the northeast,” he said.

NPP, Asom Gana Parishad, Mizo National Front and Nagaland People’s Front are among the 10 regional parties from northeast which have formed the NERPF against the Congress-led UPA to fight the Lok Sabha elections in the region.

Sangma’s NPP and Nagaland’s NPF are also part of the NDA.

NERPF, floated last October, will contest 21 out of 25 Lok Sabha seats in eight northeast states.

Blaming Congress for the “problems” in the northeast, Sangma said, “NPP and NPF are very much part of the NDA and other parties of the front are free to have alliance with any party at national level but definitely not with Congress.”

The front also expressed its reservation over the functioning of electronic voting machines and demanded alternative arrangement for casting votes in the Lok Sabha elections.

“We urge Election Commission to abolish EVM system as it is not foolproof and we do not have faith in it. We suspect it can be tampered with,” Sangma, who will be contesting from Tura constituency in Meghalaya, said.

“If at all EVMs will be used then they should be supported with paper slips,” he said.

Raising the issue of frequent incursion of China on Arunachal border, he said, “We want the government to ensure prevention of such incidents in future.”

Referring to the issue of infiltration of illegal migrants from Bangladesh, he blamed the UPA government for failing to take effective steps against influx from across the border. He also demanded immediate scrapping of the AFSPA.

Asked why his daughter Agatha, the sitting MP from Tura, has been dropped this time, he said, “It was party’s decision to nominate an experienced person to Parliament given the prevailing situation in the country.”

Sangma also said his party will contest from Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Odisha.

“My party is fielding candidates in nine seats in the five states and we are negotiating with BJP for its support in these seats,” he said.