January 19, 2021
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Assam Elections 2001

Assam: Congress Gets Simple Majority

Tarun Gogoi likely Chief Minister, promises Kashmir-type ceasefire

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Assam: Congress Gets Simple Majority
Assam: Congress Gets Simple Majority
Total Seats :125 (one countermanded)
Parties/Fronts Won
Congress 71
AGP + BJP 39
Others 15

The 25 year old tradition has been maintained -- and the incumbent party has been defeated at the hustings.Congress is back to power defeating Asom Gana Parishad..

No party has been able to retain power in Assam since 1975. In fact, the state has seen power change hands between the Congress and the AGP every five years since 1985, when the AGP was born out of the six-year-long anti-foreigner movement in Assam.

Tarun Gogoi - Next CM?
Assam congress president Tarun Gogoi, tipped to be the new chief minister, today said the new government would be formed after the arrival of AICC general secretary Kamal Nath and his party's central observers tomorrow.

"Kamal Nath and the central observers would decide when we will form the government", Gogoi, who is tipped to be the new chief minister told reporters here at the congress headquarters.  He said the congress legislature party (CLP) meeting would be held here on may 16 to formally elect its leader. Asked what would be the size of the ministry, Gogoi said, "many considerations have to be made as there are so many different communities and ethnic groups in the state". 

He said the mandate was  "vote for a better government and change from the misrule of the AGP-led government". "The people of Assam were for a long time looking for a change of government and they have full confidence in our party and leadership of Sonia Gandhi", a triumphant Gogoi, under whose stewardship congress won 71 seats to form the next goverment, told newspersons here.  

He promised to provide a government, which, he said, would bring about economic development in the state, effectively tackle the unemployment situation and solve the insurgency issue both politically and economically. Assuring that the new government would be a "transparent and open" one, he said administrative reforms would be brought about. 

Decentralisation of power, holding of panchayat polls at the year end, special policy for the youth, revamping of the education policy to give more emphasis on it and vocational training would be among the programmes of the new government.

"Kashmir Type Ceasefire"
Gogoi also said that a Kashmir-like ceasefire could be declared in Assam as a measure to solve the insurgency problem in the state. ``There is a possibility for a ceasefire as declared in Kashmir and Nagaland if the central government agreed to it." 

The ongoing anti-insurgency unified command structure in the state would continue under the control of the present authority. Gogoi also appealed to the militants to come to the negotiation table to discuss their problems.``We want to have a political as well as economic solution to the insurgency problem'', he added.

Prominent Winners and Losers:

  • Former Chief Minister Hiteswar Saikia's widow Hemoprova Saikia (Cong) retains Nazira
  • Former minister Debananda Konwar (cong) retains Thowra
  • Former minister Brindaban Goswami retains Tezpur
  • Former home minister Bhrigu Kumar Phukan loses Jalukbari for the first time since 1985

Other AGP ministers who retained their respective seats:

  • Minister of employment and labour Phani Bhushan Choudhury, Bongaigaon
  • Industry minister Gunin Hazarika, Kaliabor
  • Minister of state for labour and employment Joseph Toppo, Dhekiajuli
  • Fishery minister Bubul Das, Jagiroad.

AGP suffered its most humiliating defeat in the prestigious Dispur seat where chief minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta was beaten by congress candidate Captain Robin Bordoloi and he finished a poor third behind arch rival Atul Bora. He however managed to win his home constituency Barhampur.

Both the assembly speaker and the deputy speaker Ganesh Kutum and Renupama Rajkhowa respectively were humbled in Gohpur and Teok constituencies.  Mahanta's other cabinet colleagues who ate the humble pie were agriculture minister C M Patowary, health minister  Kamala Kalita, municipal administration minister Biraj Sarma, sericulture minister Ramendra Narayan Kalita, education minister Thaneswar Bodo and transport minister Pradip Hazarika. Among the prominent congress candidates who won were former ministers Sarat Borkotoky, Gautam Roy, Gautam Bora, Dileshwar Tanti, Debananda Konwar, Jiba Kanta Gogoi and Dr.Hemoprava Saikia. The notable losers in the congress camp included the leader of the opposition Silvius Condopan, former chief minister Anowara Taimur and former minister Amiya Gogoi

Election to Dibrugarh constituency was countermanded following the killing of BJP candidate Jayanta Dutta by ULFA militants.

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