NEW DELHI, March 24 � Was it a case of party promo shoot, or an urgent meeting convened by party vice president Rahul Gandhi to discuss poll strategy?
There are two versions to it. While some of the leaders from Assam including candidates who were pulled out from the thick of campaigning to be part of the interaction programme told newsmen that they had �meaningful discussions� feigning ignorance about any shoot, others albeit reluctantly admitted presence of camera and crews.
Ranee Narah and Bhupen Bora rushed to the capital leaving behind their campaign, within a very short notice.
According to party sources, Congress leaders from several States including Assam were summoned to Delhi to take part in a series of ad campaigns eulogising Rahul Gandhi�s leadership.
Sources said that as Rahul Gandhi insisted on shooting his interactions as it progressed, instead of repeated takes, he entered into conversation with the invited leaders, as it was being recorded albeit in batches. Leaders from Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, UP and other States were also present.
But the leaders from Assam gave a different spin to the meetings. In one group State Minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, Bhupen Bora and Pijush Hazarika, were present, besides leaders from other States.
Emerging from the meeting, Ranee Narah said that there has been a change of Congress president, Sonia Gandhi�s programme. She is not visiting Lakhimpur on March 28, as scheduled but would visit the constituency at a later date.
Bhupen Bora told newsmen that several development issues concerning Assam were discussed and Rahul Gandhi wanted to know about the progress of his campaign.
State Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that they interacted in two groups discussing poll. �Rahul Gandhi enquired about the poll prospects in Assam and we conveyed to him we will do well in Assam. Gandhi then discussed about the flood problem of Assam, Sarma said.
�We are all working to get maximum number of seats,� he said.
�How can I assure him about Congress Party�s victory, I am only an ordinary party worker? But I can say with confidence that we will increase our tally in Assam by at least one or two seats,� he said.
Another MLA and youth leader, Rekiduddin described the event as very memorable claiming that Rahul Gandhi discussed with them various problems faced by Assam including the Lok Sabha elections.