GUWAHATI: Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that he would request the Election Commission of India (ECI) to hold the Assam phases of the forthcoming Lok Sabha election before the Rongali Bihu, slated for mid-April.
Speaking to the media today, the Chief Minister said, “Generally, given the atmosphere in Assam, elections are held in the state before the Bohag Bihu. I will request the Election Commission of India to hold the Lok Sabha poll phases in Assam before April 14, 2024. This will allow the people of the state to celebrate the Bohag Bihu with fanfare.”
When the media asked him if the BJP was ready for the Lok Sabha election, the Chief Minister said, “Yes, we are ready. We have no problems in Assam. Under the leadership of Narendra Modi, the BJP will ensure a massive win all over India.”
When asked about the Assam leg of Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, the Chief Minister said, “On that day (January 22), Rahul Gandhi was in a hurry to go to Batadrava Than. He, however, passed by near Bhupen Hazarika’s Samadhi Khetra at Jalukbari yesterday. He had not a single minute to pay respect to the maestro. He also passed the Hajo Poa Mecca and the Hayagriva Madhav Mandir. He had no time to pay visits to these two sacred places. He also passed by the Barpeta Xatra without paying a visit to it. He even opted not to visit the Kamakhya Temple. This makes it amply clear that his craze for a visit to Batadrava Than was nothing but a ploy to grab media attention and to create unrest in Assam.”
The Chief Minister said, “If he had respect for Srimanta Sankardev, he would have visited Barpeta Xatra. Srimanta Sankardev was staying at Patboushi Xatra, near Barpeta. He could have visited these two xatras. Had he had faith in Hinduism, he could have paid a short visit to the Kamakhya Temple. The sole purpose of Rahul Gandhi’s Assam visit was to create unrest in the state. We have foiled his motive. Now he is carrying out his yatra in the Dhubri district. We have no objection to that.”
In the case filed against Rahul Gandhi, the Chief Minister said, “We will arrest Rahul Gandhi after the Lok Sabha election. If we arrest him now, people will take that as a political move. The SIT (Special Investigation Team) will look into the matter. His provocation to party workers to break barricades erected by the police would have led to serious law-and-order problems in Guwahati on January 23. A guest should always respect the rules of the hosting state. We want a peaceful Assam.”