Assam Assembly Election: Upset with 'dynastic politics', Congress workers burn effigy of state party chief

Guwahati: Alleging that the first list of candidates for the assembly polls was an example of the Congress' love for "dynastic politics", many party workers across the state took to the streets on Wednesday, while some 'deprived' legislators vowed to contest as independents.

Angry Congress workers in Lakhimpur laid siege to the party office Rajiv Bhavan in Lakhimpur and called for a shutdown of the district on the day opposing the All India Congress Committee's decision to give the ticket for the constituency to Joy Prakash Das instead of party veteran Ghana Buragohain.

While Das is the former leader of the National Students' Union of India (NSUI), the student wing of the party, Burhagohain is the former Lakhimpur legislator who had lost to Asom Gana Parishad's Utpal Dutta in 2011 only by a margin of 1,099 votes.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

Grassroots workers of the ruling party also set a deadline till Thursday to replace the candidature of Joy Prakash Das by giving the ticket to Buragohain, failing which they have threatened to desert the Congress en masse.

Similarly, Congress workers in Mahmora constituency agitated against the candidature of Suruj Dihingia, instead of sitting legislator Sarat Saikia, who has been winning the seat for the last three consecutive terms on Congress tickets.

Party workers in Mahmora set ablaze the effigy of Assam Congress chief Anjan Dutta for depriving Sarat Saikia of a ticket.

Saikia, meanwhile, hinted that he may contest the polls independently.

Amia Gogoi, the Congress legislator from Duliajan, was also not given a ticket. Newcomer Dhruba Jyoti Gogoi is the party candidate.

"My supporters are urging me to contest the polls independently. I shall take a decision in this regard soon," Gogoi said.

Many agitators also alleged that the first list of 65 candidates was an example of the Congress' love for "dynastic politics".

They said that in the name of giving tickets to new candidates, the party has named only the sons and daughters or relatives of senior Congress leaders.

"The party had earlier assured tickets to new candidates. However, most of the new candidates include only sons or daughters or other relatives of veteran Congressmen," said Utpal Das, one of the agitators at Mahmora.

"In Aamguri, they have given the ticket to Ankita Dutta, who is the daughter of APCC president Anjan Dutta. Similarly in Sarupathar, they have given the ticket to Rosenila Tirkey, daughter of sitting MLA Aklius Tirkey."

The Congress list announced on Tuesday evening in Delhi includes the names of Gautam Dhanowar, son of Digboi legislator Rameswar Dhanowar, and Pallabi Saikia Gogoi, the daughter-in-law of Teok legislator Membar Gogoi.

BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma said: "There cannot be a worst list for the Congress candidates than the one announced yesterday (Tuesday).

"The Congress is a party run by 'mother-son' and 'father-son'. After the Congress list was out, many leaders have contacted us and we are going to take a decision on them soon," he said.

Going by the list, Sarma said the Congress will get even lesser seats in the polls than the BJP had expected it would get.


Updated Date: Mar 16, 2016 18:03 PM

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