GUWAHATI,MEHBOOB JEELANI:The BJP will stake claim to form the government in Assam soon after the new MLAs elect Sarbananda Sonowal as the Legislature Party leader on Sunday. Mr. Sonowal would later meet Governor P.B. Acharya, BJP spokesperson Pranav Saika said on Saturday.
On Friday, Mr. Sonowal flew to Delhi and met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah. He was accompanied by Himanta Biswa Sarma, who quit the Congress last year and joined the BJP.
Cabinet posts for AGP
Party sources said that apart from inviting Mr. Modi and Mr. Shah to the swearing-in ceremony scheduled for May 24, Mr. Sonowal and Mr. Sarma would recommend the names of legislators for the 14-member Cabinet.
Allies, the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) and the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), would be offered Cabinet berths.
A senior BJP leader in Guwahati told The Hindu that the allies would be offered five ministerial positions — three to the AGP and two to the BPF.
However, AGP chief and former Chief Minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta said he had no knowledge about the BJP’s offer.
“We are yet to decide on the number of ministerial berths we would like to have,” he said, adding that the AGP would take a call at a party meeting on Sunday.