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ASSAM

11 seats in hand, Bodo front gets down to berth control

Friday 12 May 2006

Express news service

guwahati

A few days ahead of the Assam elections, Hagrama Mohilari, a rebel-turned- politician, thanks to a peace accord signed between the government and the Bodoland Liberation Tigers (BLT) three years ago, had said: ’’We will control Dispur from Kokrajhar.’’ Today, that did not seem just rhetoric. The Congress has slid from 71 in the 2001 elections to 52 and it will now have to depend on the Hagrama faction of the Bodo People’s Progressive Front (BPPF) to stake claim for forming the government.

’’We have been proved right. The Congress cannot form the government without our support,’’ said a jubilant Mohilari at Kokrajhar as counting came to an end. Mohilari was, till 2002, chairman of the now defunct Bodo Liberation Tigers.

Mohilari, whose faction has swept the Bodo-dominated segments by winning 11 seats, leaving none for the other faction of BPPF headed by Rabiram Narzary, has even claimed he would demand at least three Cabinet berths. ’’We are providing vital support to the Congress, and it will be unfair if we do not get three cabinet berths,’’ he said. Mohilari said his party would support only Tarun Gogoi for chief minister.

See online : The Indian Express

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