Darjeeling, March 24: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha today said it will only support the BJP in the plains Assembly segments at a time the Left Front has not fielded any nominee against the party in the hills.
Earlier this month, the Left Front had said it would support the Morcha in the three hill seats.
Today, Morcha general Roshan Giri said: "We have fielded our own candidates in the three hill segments of Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong as well as Islampur and Chopra in the plains. Apart from this, our choices (nominees) have been given BJP tickets from Kalchini, Madarihat, Nagrakata and Kumargram. In the rest of the seats, our party will support the BJP candidates as we are in an alliance with them. We have never sought support from other parties as we are in an alliance with the BJP."
The CPM's decision to not contest in the hills had put pressure on the Morcha with the Jan Andolan Party (JAP), alleging that Bimal Gurung's outfit had an understanding with those against statehood.
|GJM general secretary Roshan Giri|
The Morcha's Bishal Lama has been given the BJP ticket from Kalchini.
In the last two Assembly polls, Morcha-supported Wilson Chapramary had won from Kalchini. This time, however, Chapramary is the Trinamul nominee.
Observers said the Morcha was eager to distance itself from the CPM's announcement of support as its rivals in the hills are expected to raise the issue during campaigning.
CPM state secretariat member Asok Bhattacharya had said: "We have not fielded any candidate in the hills as we believe that the Morcha is the strongest political party there and since it is also against the TMC, we did not want any division in the anti-TMC votes. The support, however, does not mean that we are seeking support from the Morcha in the plains."
In another development, GNLF's Sagar Rai, Basant Pradhan, Jipsang Lepcha and Migma Sherpa joined the Morcha, along with 40-odd supporters.
The ABGL today named Laxman Pradhan, the party vice-president, as its Darjeeling candidate.
The names of the candidates for Kalimpong and Kurseong seats have not been finalised yet.