Silchar: Poll scenario in Karimganj was all set to take an interesting twist as MLA Siddeque Ahmed hinted that he might join the AGP and if Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma gives him green signal then he would contest the ensuing Lok Sabha election as a ruling party candidate. The Congress had expelled Ahmed, who represents South Karimganj constituency in the state Assembly last year after his alleged cross voting for the ruling party candidate in the presidential election. Recently Ahmed and his followers had warned the Congress that if the expulsion order was not revoked then they would work against the party. Since then Ahmed, who was a Minister in Tarun Gogoi’s last tenure, was presently seen sharing dias with the ruling party’s state leaders and was all praise for the BJP government.
Sources close to Siddque Ahmed said that he had a meeting with the AGP president Atul Bora and Minister Keshab Mahanta who had reportedly asked him to join the party. “The AGP leaders had assured Ahmed that if he joins their party, they would talk to Himanta Biswa Sarma to field him as a ruling party candidate in Karimganj,” the source claimed. Ahmed, who left Karimganj on Tuesday for Chennai for treatment, confirmed that he had discussion with some AGP leaders. Ahmed said, during the Assembly session he would meet the Chief Minister and if he says ‘go ahead’ then he would join the fray as a ruling party candidate. A district AGP leader informed that Siddeque Ahmed would join the party in the first week of February.
Meanwhile, former BJP MLA from Karimganj Mission Ranjan Das said, they would not sacrifice the seat to the alliance partner. “We will take up the issue with the Chief Minister and will apprise him that Karimganj is always a winning seat for the BJP and the seat cannot be compromised,” Das said. He further added that he had been assured by the state leadership that he would be the candidate in Karimganj.
Sources, quite conversant with the election mechanism, hinted that Siddeque Ahmed would be fielded in Karimganj, either as an AGP candidate along with the BJP or as an independent candidate only to make division in Muslim votes. Following the delimitation, Karimganj Lok Sabha seat had been unreserved for the first time since the independence. The bordering constituency comprising two districts Karimganj and Hailakandi had more than two lakh Musim votes in comparison to the Hindus. Both the Congress and the AIUDF would field prominent Muslim figures in the fray. More and more Muslim candidates and more and more division in Muslim votes was the only chance for the BJP to retain the seat, and Siddeque Ahmed might fit in this equation properly.