BJP lashes out at “immature” SKM for breaking alliance

Gangtok, 17 Mar:

The Bharatiya Janata Party’s Sikkim unit has lashed against Sikkim Krantikari Morcha for breaking off the alliance at its final stages. The BJP-Sikkim president, DB Chauhan, told a press conference today that SKM’s last-minute ditch not only revealed its “political immaturity” but was also a big letdown for the people of Sikkim who were hoping for a strong Opposition alliance this time.

BJP leaders, including its central leadership, it may be recalled were convinced that the BJP-SKM alliance was final and that only the formalities of seat-sharing had to be worked out. SKM had clearly emerged from its meetings with BJP leaders in Delhi with a different understanding of what was discussed and decided and had announced its decision to contest the elections on its own on 15 March.

Mr Chauhan informed a press conference here today that the alliance had been finalized after a series of meetings between a seven-member SKM delegation led by PS Tamang [Golay] with the BJP national president, Amit Shah, and other senior BJP leaders in Delhi.

He informed that BJP had asked for 10 seats in the initial talks but had later agreed to the SKM proposal of seven seats. And then SKM broke the alliance in its final stages, he said.

Mr Chauhan added that this was not the first time that SKM has “betrayed” BJP. He also commented that there may have been some pressure which compelled SKM to break the alliance.

“SKM had announced the alliance in a press conference. So SKM has played with the sentiments of the people of Sikkim by suddenly breaking the alliance process,” he said.

He informed that the BJP high command had even agreed to the eight-point minimum common programme proposed by SKM so there was no valid reason, except pressure, to explain why SKM broke away.

While reiterating that SKM had let the people down with it decision to opt out of the alliance, the BJP-Sikkim president today announced that BJP was prepared to fight the elections on its own in Sikkim.

He however added that BJP was also in the touch with different regional parties for a strong probable alliance in the State.

Meanwhile, Mr Chauhan also informed that the state-unit has already sent its report for the elections to the high command and after their approval, will announce the numbers of seats that the BJP will contest here.