GUWAHATI, April 1 - Despite their individual claims, none of the three major political parties of the State � Congress, BJP and AIUDF� seems to be ahead of their rivals in the Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi districts of the Barak Valley. Elections to the Barak Valley seats will be held in the first phase of the Assembly polls, slated for April 4.
The claims being made by these political parties has only made the picture unclear for the common people.
Speaking to this newspaper, senior Congress leader Karnendu Bhattacharyya claimed that his party is sure to win six of the seven seats in Cachar district. Though there are some problems in the remaining seat, the Congress is hopeful of overcoming those problems too, he added.
Bhattacharyya said in Barkhola, Dholai (SC), Sonai, Lakhipur, Udarband and Silchar, the prospects of victory are bright for the Congress. However, the ruling party is facing a tough challenge from the AIUDF in Katigora Assembly Constituency.
In Cachar district, though the Congress faces the BJP as its main rival, the AIUDF may also pose a challenge in Sonai and Katigora.
The Congress is also hopeful of winning the Katlichera and Algapur Assembly seats in Hailakandi district, Bhattacharyya said. But he is not aware of the exact position of his party in the Hailakandi Assembly seat.
In Karimganj district, the Congress is sure to win in the Ratabari, Patharkandi, Karimganj North, Karimganj South and Badarpur Assembly constituencies, claimed Keteki Prasad Dutta, president of the Karimganj District Congress Committee, while talking to this newspaper.
Meanwhile, Cachar district BJP president Kaushik Rai told this newspaper that the BJP is sure of its win in the Silchar and Dholai Assembly constituencies, while its prospects in Katigora constituency are also bright. In Katigora, the contest will be a triangular one with the BJP, Congress and AIUDF engaged in a do-or-die battle, Rai said.
In Barkhola, too, the contest is a triangular one, with the BJP, Congress and Independent candidate Misbaul Islam Laskar locking horns. In Sonai too, the contest is a triangular one involving the BJP, Congress and AIUDF, with the BJP having an edge over its rivals, Rai claimed. The BJP will face a tough challenge from the Congress in Udarband and Lakhipur. However, the position of the BJP is improving, he added.
The BJP has winning prospects in Algapur despite challenges from the AIUDF, Rai said. In Hailakandi, the BJP is again locked in a contest with the Congress and AIUDF. But the BJP has a leeway as the Congress and AIUDF candidates in this constituency are facing opposition from candidates belonging to their own religious community.
In Katlichera too, the BJP has an edge over the Congress and AIUDF, Rai said.
The BJP�s prospects are very bright in Karimganj North despite the Congress challenge, he added. In Karimganj South, the BJP is locked in a tough contest with the Congress and AIUDF. In Badarpur, the BJP will again over the challenge posed by the Congress and AIUDF, Rai said.
The Cachar district AIUDF president, advocate Mahmud Hussain Mazumdar, on the other hand, said that his party is contesting 13 seats in the Barak Valley and its ally, Janata Dal-United, is fielding its candidate in one seat.
The AIUDF is hopeful of winning ten seats including Algapur, Hailakandi, Katlichera, Badarpur, Patharkandi, Karimganj North, Karimganj South, Ratabari, Katigora and Barkhola.
Its main rival is the BJP in Patharkandi, Ratabari, Karimganj North, Katigora, Barkhola, Udarbond, Dholai and Hailakandi. In Sonai, Algapur, Katlichera and Badarpur, the AIUDF will face the challenge from the Congress, said Mazumdar.