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If demands are met, AUDF may join UPA

Sushanta Talukdar

Guwahati: The Assam United Democratic Front (AUDF) on Monday said it might join the United Progressive Alliance if it got specific assurances on fulfilment of certain demands.

The demands include adequate compensation, on the lines of what was paid to victims of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, to “martyrs” and victims of the infamous 1983 Nellie carnage, updating of the National Register of Citizens and declaration of Assam’s flood and erosion woes as a national problem.

A high-level delegation of the party led by its president Badruddin Ajmal has left for Delhi to discuss the Congress proposal that the AUDF join the UPA.

Mr. Ajmal has won the Dhubri Lok Sabha seat with a huge margin, defeating his nearest Congress rival and sitting member Anowar Hussain. Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, who had resisted an alliance with the AUDF for the Lok Sabha polls and insisted on its merger with the Congress, acknowledged after the results on May 16 that the party with one MP and 10 MLAs was a force to reckon with.

The AUDF secured the highest number of votes in 25 Assembly segments in the Lok Sabha elections. This prompted a section of State Congress leaders to push for a tie-up with the party ahead of the 2011 Assembly polls to check the erosion of the Congress vote bank, particularly among religious minorities.

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