Rangasamy to head NDA in Puducherry, BJP says

The AINRC will contest 16 seats and the remaining 14 will be shared by the BJP and AIADMK for the Puducherry elections on April 6

All India N. R Congress chief and former Chief Minister N. Rangasamy will head the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) during the Assembly elections in the Union Territory, BJP in-charge for the UT, Nirmal Kumar Surana, said on Tuesday.

The AINRC will contest 16 seats and the remaining 14 will be shared by the BJP and AIADMK. No seat-sharing talks were held with the PMK, Mr. Surana further said.

The announcements were made at a press conference held at a hotel in the presence of Mr. Rangasamy, AIADMK leader A. Anbalagan and nominated legislator and BJP local unit president V. Saminathan.

To a question on whether Mr. Rangasamy will be projected as the Chief Ministerial candidate, the BJP leader said the Chief Ministerโ€™s post will be decided after the elections. โ€œThe alliance will be led by Mr Rangasamy. We will face the elections together and the CM post will be decided later,โ€ he said.

On the number of seats to be given to the AIADMK, Mr. Surana said both the parties would sit together to decide on the numbers.

When his comments were sought on the opposition within AINRC on aligning with BJP, Mr. Rangasamy said โ€œIt was only the views of party members made at a consultative meeting. They had left the decision making to me.โ€

Asked whether he had raised the issue of Statehood for the UT during his deliberations with the BJP, the former Chief Minister said the formation of AINRC itself was with the main objective to obtain Statehood. โ€œWe have raised it in the past and will continue to raise the issue,โ€ he added.

AIADMK leader A. Anbalagan said the objective of forging an alliance with the BJP was with the aim to develop Puducherry. โ€œThe previous Congress government wasted their tenure by constantly fighting with the BJP. Only when we have a cordial relationship with Centre, will development activities take place in Puducherry.โ€ he added.

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