GUWAHATI: The Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) today claimed that its seven-party grand alliance, Mahajot, would form the Assam government with an absolute majority.
The claim came after a day the BJP claimed that its alliance with the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and United People’s Party-Liberal (UPPL) would form the government at Dispur winning at least 85 seats in the 126-member house.
The claims follow some of the exit polls predicted there would be marginal difference of seats between the two Congress and BJP lead alliances. Assam went to polls in three phases on March 27, April 1 and 6, and counting will be done tomorrow.
A party or an alliance would have to win at least 84 seats for an absolute majority and 64 seats for a simple majority. The Congress alliance comprises All India United Democratic Front, Bodoland People's Front, CPI, CPIM, CPI (M-L) and Anachalik Gana Morcha.
Reacting to the BJP state president Ranjeet Kr Dass’s claim citing margins that its candidates would win by, APCC spokesman Apurba Bhattacharyya today said: “It was nothing but ridiculous. Besides, it can also be a ploy to put pressure on the officials to be involved in the counting process. Or, it can also be a buttress to salvage the gradual erosion of confidence among the grassroots workers of the party who are all but convinced there would be a Mahajot government this time.
“Dass has himself contradicted his predictions. If BJP is winning by over 90,000 votes in Sorbhog, why did you run away from there to contest from Patacharkuchi, Mr Dass?”
About the prediction of margins, he said: “It was a ridiculing of the credibility of the Election Commission of India. If voting was held in the secret ballot format, how can the ruling party predict the margins its candidates would win by? The BJP is claiming that the data about margins its candidates would get was collected from booth level workers. For that, there must be a mechanism in the hand of the ruling party through which its grassroots workers are able to calculate the number of votes casted in their favour. All will be answered tomorrow.
“The BJP state president’s presentation of data is all but a misdemeanor of the ruling party to make the credibility of the Election Commission of India questionable … But, we believe, the Election Commission of India will not allow image to be tarnished like this.”
Bhattacharyya substantiated his claim of two-third majority stating that a recent opinion poll suggested that 19 per cent people of the state prefer incumbent Sarbananda Sonowal was chief minister and 20 per cent are with Himanta Biswa Sarma, while little over 17 per cent are in favour of a Congress chief minister.
“Only 20 per cent are with tested and tried persons, while over 17 per cent are with a Congress man even before the Mahajot has named its chief ministerial candidate. Once we declare the name after tomorrow’s counting, imagine how much more will our government enjoy the people’s support,” he said.
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