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New Ministers shirk work as civic polls loom

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  7 Feb 2015 12:00 AM GMT

Gogoi’s reshuffle fizzles out, Dispur remains inert

BY OUR STAFF REPORTER

GUWAHATI, February 6: Will the new Gogoi ministry be able to fulfil the expectations of the people of Assam? This is the big question now doing the rounds in political circles here after the 14 new ministers took charge on January 23 last.

Though the newly joined ministers have promised the moon, all of them are now busy with the civic elections scheduled to be held on February 9. These new members of Team Gogoi are currently campaigning for their party in their own constituencies instead of working in their offices at Dispur and clearing files or monitoring development works. Due to non–availability of the new ministers in Dispur, works of their departments have come to a standstill.

Whether it’s the new ministry or the earlier one, development activities in the State have been badly hit in Tarun Gogoi’s third innings as Chief Minister from 2011.

In the first six months of 2011, the works of different departments ran smoothly but not for long. From the middle of 2012, dissidence raised its head in the ruling party, led by the then Health and Education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. The energies of the Congress have mostly been used to douse the flames of dissidence since then.

During July 2014, dissidence reached its peak, which resulted in Himanta Biswa Sarma quitting the ministry and two ministers getting the axe with the party High Command’s approval.

But the truth is that amidst all the dissidence drama, the State suffered the most, as works of many development schemes/programmes have been hanging fire for years.

Though 14 new ministers took oath on January 23, the Chief Minister for his own reasons, has kept four ministerial berths in the cabinet vacant. Sources said: “From January 23 till date, only few new ministers have attended their offices at Dispur.”

Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president Anjan Dutta recently said that the performance of Congress ministers and MLAs in their own constituencies will be taken into consideration while giving party tickets for the 2016 Assembly elections.

But given the present situation, the newly inducted members in the Gogoi cabinet are far from fulfilling this criteria set by the APCC president.

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