GUWAHATI, July 21 � Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today said that he was completely taken by surprise when he came to know that Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had gone to meet the Governor to tender his resignation even as Gogoi loyalists including Ministers like Rockybul Hussain and Pradyut Bordoloi wrote to the party leadership for disciplinary action against the rebel Minister.
Refuting the charges drawn against him by his one-time close aide Himanta Biswa Sarma, the Chief Minister in an official statement said that Sarma had met him last evening at his official residence and also promised to come back for further discussion along with some MLAs at 10 pm.
�Later he rang up to inform that they would come in the evening ( July 21) today,� he said.
In the course of the discussions last evening, Chief Minister Gogoi suggested Sarma that wider discussions should be held between different groups to arrive at a consensus, the statement added.
Gogoi further said that Sarma had said during the discussions last night that he would talk to his colleagues and that he was also in favour of wider discussions.
�Sarma was to hold discussions with his colleagues and come for further discussion at 10 pm yesterday to the Chief Minister�s residence. However, he later informed over telephone last night that he would come along with some MLAs in the evening today,� he added.
Gogoi made it categorically clear that he had not suggested a reshuffle of his ministry after every four months to Sarma during discussions last night at his official residence � something which was alleged by Sarma at a press conference today.
�I have never said such a vague thing. How can one change a ministry after every four months? This allegation has no basis�, Gogoi said.
Gogoi said that in his entire political career since 1971, he has never played communal politics as alleged by Sarma. �I have been a disciplined soldier of the Congress party and my credentials are known to all. I have always worked for the party�s interest. My stand and commitment towards the party is well-known. I do not require any certificate from anyone,� he added.
Later in the evening, Gogoi loyalists sat for a close-door meeting in the Chief Minister official residence at Koinadhora.