BARPETA, Oct 16 - With four days to go to polls for the Jania LAC bye-elections in Barpeta district, political parties and their candidates have intensified campaigning. Though there are nine candidates in the fray the battle of ballot will be a triangular one among the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Indian National Congress and the All India United Democratic Front.
Ruling BJP leaders have pulled out all plugs to woo the voters in favour of its nominee Tawfikur Rahman, a well-known artiste of the State. Chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal addressed two election rallies yesterday where he played the traditional development card.
The Chief Minister said that his government has introduced a number of development and welfare schemes for the poor and weaker sections of the society, without discriminating between any community or sect. Citing examples, he stated that government is going to establish eight colleges for minority girls by which Barpeta district will be benefited most. He claimed that the highest number of beneficiaries among scholarship to minority students and PM Krishak Sanman Nidhi belong to Barpeta district particularly under Jania and Baghbar areas.
State Minister for Health and PWD, Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma in his public meeting on October 14 said that people of the constituency should not think of anyone except the BJP if they want development. He claimed that the present government has done for this area so much work in three years which the Congress led government could not do during their long tenure since independence.
President of the State unit of the BJP Ranjit Dass also addressed a series of meetings during the last few days. Dass also met the local leaders and planned the strategy for the election. The negative point for the ruling party is that its candidate is not acquainted with the geography, demography and the local tradition of this comparatively interior and backward constituency of the State.
Member of Parliament and president of the AIUDF Badaruddin Ajmal has been camping in Jania constituency for the last few days. Besides addressing public meetings, Ajmal is spending his time discussing ways and means with the local leaders to make their candidate and former MLA Rafiqul Islam win. Till now Islam seems to be in a better position than his nearest rival.
The Congress is also not lagging behind in terms of campaigning. The workers of the party are being led by Abdul Khalek, MP of Barpeta, whose resignation as MLA necessitated the bye election. State president of the party Ripun Borah has also addressed a series of public meetings where he played the old card of secularism.
Voters are puzzled as of now. With the strong presence of the BJP here, which is still a stronghold of the Congress and AIUDF, they are confused are but sure that the electors will exercise their franchise much cautiously than the previous polls.