A day after the first phase of assembly elections in Assam, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal today asserted that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will be re-elected to form the government in the state. Mr Sonowal, who was among the key candidate in the first phase, said that his government has “earned the trust of people” with its development-centric policies and by ensuring peace in the state.
“When we started five years back, we faced challenges like ensuring good governance and making Assam free from corruption, extremists and illegal migrants. We did good work and earned the trust of people. Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid a lot of attention. People have now gained trust in us. If BJP is there, there is safety, there is development, there is peace – the people have come to realise this,” Mr Sonowal told NDTV.
When asked about the candidate for the Chief Minister’s post in Assam, he said, “Question is not whether Sonowal wants to remain in power. Question is BJP has done great work. We want the party to get elected again. PM Modi’s blessings are for all of us. All ministers have helped us.”
Mr Sonowal also reiterated that, if voted to power, his government would bring an error-free National Register of Citizens (NRC) and ensure that no “illegal migrant” is staying in the state. “NRC that has been published is full of defects, many illegal migrants are named. People of Assam want a rectified NRC. We will ensure no inflitrators’ names feature in corrected NRC,” he said.
There is greater focus towards the northeast under the Narendra Modi government, he said. “We have 48-km patch with the help of technology from Israel. Now, there’s no news of influx and the border is completely sealed with physical barriers,” he added.
Commenting on the Congress-AIUDF alliance, Mr Sonowal said: “The alliance is not united. People don’t trust them. Congress did a poor job. They can’t earn trust”.
Chief Minister Sonowal was the biggest name on the ballot in the first phase of state polls yesterday. Mr Sonowal is defending his Majuli seat – a reserved constituency – from the Congress’ Rajib Lochan Pegu – a three-time former MLA from this seat.
Assam reported a turnout of 76.9% per cent.