Assam Assembly Elections 2021: Campaigning ends for second phase, polling on Thursday
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress Leader Rahul GandhiImage source: The Bridge Chronicle

Assam Assembly Elections 2021: Campaigning ends for second phase, polling on Thursday

Campaigning ended for the second phase of Assam Assembly Elections scheduled on Thursday for 39 of the 126 Assembly constituencies

Guwahati: Campaigning ended for the second phase of Assam Assembly Elections scheduled on Thursday for 39 of the 126 Assembly constituencies where the fate of 345 candidates, including 26 women, will be decided.

The second phase of polls will be held mostly in central and southern Assam where the seats include six reserved for Scheduled Tribes and five for Scheduled Castes. Assam Chief Electoral Officer Nitin Khade said that all preparations have been completed to conduct free, fair, peaceful and smooth elections on Thursday, when 73,44,631 voters are eligible to cast their votes across 10,592 polling stations.

FATE OF SEVERAL LEADERS

The fate of several Assam Ministers including Fisheries, Excise, Environment and Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya, Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Piyush Hazarika, state Irrigation Minister Bhabesh Kalita and Deputy Speaker Aminul Haque Laskar will be decided in this phase.

Suklabaidya is contesting from the Dholai seat for the seventh time on a BJP ticket, Hazarika from Jagiroad and Kalita from Rangia. Former Congress Minister Gautam Roy is contesting from Katigorah on a BJP ticket, while former Deputy Speaker Dilip Kumar Paul, who resigned from the BJP after he was denied ticket and was subsequently expelled, is contesting as an Independent from Silchar constituency.

The third and final phase of Assam assembly elections would be held in 40 seats on April 6. Results will be declared on May 2. Nearly 80 per cent of 8,109,815 voters cast their votes on Saturday in the first phase conducted in 47 constituencies.

In the month-long hectic election campaign, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP President JP Nadda, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and his Madhya Pradesh counterpart Shivraj Singh Chouhan campaigned for party candidates.

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress Leader Rahul Gandhi
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On the other side, Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, former Maharashtra CM Ashok Chavan, former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath, party spokesman Gourav Vallabh and General Secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala were among the central leaders who campaigned for their party candidates.

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To take on the BJP, the Congress, which governed Assam for 15 consecutive years (2001-2016), formed a 10-party 'Mahajot' (grand alliance), also comprising three Left parties -- the CPI-M, the CPI and the CPI-ML, along with the AIUDF, the Anchalik Gana Morcha, the BPF, the Rashtriya Janata Dal and two community-based parties -- the Jimochayan (Deori) People's Party and Adivasi National Party.

(With inputs from IANS)

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