GUWAHATI, April 23 - High turnout of voters in all three phases of the Lok Sabha elections in Assam proved that the people of the State have high regard for the democratic system of the country, said Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, Sonowal expressed the view that people�s participation is a must for the democratic system to grow and it is a positive sign that in all the three phases of elections, cross sections of people came out enthusiastically to exercise their franchise. He said that the enthusiasm among the young voters is also a positive development, which proved that Indian democracy has a bright future.
Sonowal, who is also in charge of the Home Department, said that he was satisfied over the fact that the elections were conducted in a peaceful manner. He pointed out that no major incident of violence was reported from any part of the State during the elections and even during the run up to the polls. �As the Chief Minister of Assam, I am very satisfied over the fact that the election in Assam was a peaceful affair. Several parts of the country witnessed pre-poll violence including clashes between supporters of rival parties, but the situation is entirely different in Assam and we witnessed a very peaceful election,� he added.
The Chief Minister said that maintaining law and order is primarily the responsibility of the State Government and police and security forces worked round the clock to ensure that the elections pass off peacefully. He also thanked the people of the State for peaceful conduct of the polls and admitted that without the cooperation of the people it would not have been possible to ensure such peaceful election.
Sonowal pointed out that because of the overall improvement of the law and order situation, people came out in large numbers to cast their votes without any apprehension in their minds. During his tenure as the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi ensured that all sections of people are involved in the democratic system of the country and that is why, the turnout of voters was high not only in Assam but also in other parts of the country, he added.
Replying to a question on personal attacks against candidates and leaders of political parties in poll campaigns, Sonowal said that such attacks have become an all India phenomenon. However, at the same time, he admitted that this is not a healthy sign for democracy and said that the criticism should be restricted to policies of political parties. He claimed that during the campaigns, he had tried his best to refrain from launching any personal attack against any opposition leader.