Top State BJP leaders go into a huddle
By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, Dec 1: With Assam Election Department calling out – on your mark, get set, go – for the panchayat poll in the State, top BJP Assam Pradesh leaders went into a huddle twice on Friday to draw their strategies.
The first top-level meeting of the party was attended by Chief Minister Sarbanda Sonowal, the party’s central general secretary and Northeast in-charge Ram Madhab, State BJP president Ranjit Kumar Dass, all party MLAs, MPs and others.
Ram Madhab was crystal clear in getting his message across the State party leaders when he said: “This panchayat poll will be a report card for BJP Assam Pradesh – if it has takers among the public in the State or not.”
The Chief Minister, on the other hand, spelt it out in clear terms: “If we’re to win the panchayat poll, we should ensure that the benefits of our schemes should reach the panchayat level. This is a task that has to be done by the government and the party as well.” To ally or not to ally with its coalition partners in the pacnhayat poll is still a disputed matter among MLAs and mandal committees of the party. While four MLAs still want an electoral understanding with BJP allies in the panchayat poll, the rest are against it. Likewise, 295 of the 302 mandal committees of the party do not want alliance with any of the party’s coalition partners at Dispur.
The meeting decided to hold a pre-panchayat poll convention on December 24, 2017 when all the 6,000 in-charges of the party’s ‘Shakti Kendras’ from all over the State will go into a huddle. The meeting also decided to form a three-layer committee for the selection party candidates for panchayat members, panchayat presidents, anchalik panchayat presidents and zila parisahd elections. Though the party took a decision to take out a padayatra from December 25 to January next, the Chief Minister asked the party not to take out any procession when NRC update work is going on in the State. The office-bearers of the party held a meeting in the evening and endorsed all the decisions taken at the meeting earlier in the day.