GUWAHATI, April 26 - The highlight of the run up to the elections to the Assam Legislative Assembly this year was frequent visits by the high profile leaders of both the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for campaigning. But one Member of Parliament (MP) from the State was conspicuous by his absence during the entire process and even his own party is not aware of his whereabouts and why he did not visit the State even once to extend help to the candidates of the party.
Rajya Sabha member from Assam, Sanjay Singh, whose selection as a candidate by the All India Congress Committee (AICC) for elections to the Upper House even caught the State Congress men off guard, was elected comfortably because the party had the requisite majority in the State Assembly, but he did not even bother to visit the State during the run up to the elections. In fact, he did not campaign for the party even during the last Lok Sabha polls.
The Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) is also unaware as to why the MP from Assam did not visit the State during the election process at a time when MPs from other States of the country frequently visited Assam to campaign for the candidates of the party.
When contacted by The Assam Tribune, the APCC president, Anjan Dutta admitted that he is not aware why the MP did not visit the State during the polls. He also admitted that it was �unfortunate� that an MP from Assam did not visit the State even once during the entire election process.
Dutta accepted the fact that as an MP from Assam, it was the responsibility of Singh to campaign for the candidates of the party and to help out the party during the polls. He said that the APCC did not make any special request to the MPs from the State to campaign during the polls and it is their responsibility to work for the party. All the other MPs from the State worked wholeheartedly for the party during the polls , while, even former MPs worked round the clock. �We are not aware why Sanjay Singh did not visit Assam and we were not informed by anyone in this regard,� he admitted.
The APCC president said that the lists of star campaigners of the party were finalized by the State Congress in consultation with the district units and candidates and the list was sent to the AICC for approval. After getting the approval of the AICC the list of star campaigners was sent to the Election Commission.
Accordingly, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, vice president Rahul Gandhi, former Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, former Union Ministers Ghulam Nabi Azad and Jairam Ramesh and other senior leaders like Raj Babbar, Sachin Pilot and others campaigned extensively for the party. He admitted that the APCC did not send any special invitation to Sanjay Singh to visit Assam as �being an MP from Assam, it is his own responsibility to visit and we did not think it was necessary to send special invitation to a local MP.�