Guwahati, Sep 7: Senior Congress leaders on Sunday held a meeting here to prepare the roadmap for the next year's Assembly elections in the backdrop of 10 party legislators deciding to join the BJP. The meeting was presided over by the party's state unit chief, Anjan Dutta, and attended by AICC General Secretary C P Joshi and Secretary Avinash Pande.
The senior leaders said that the exit of 10 MLAs, including former minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, from the party to join the BJP was not based on any principle but was "only an exercise in achieving self goals for personal gain only."
The leaders also observed that most of the defecting MLAs had lost mass contact following which they deserted the party which got them elected. Former PCC President Paban Singh Ghatowar said that such unprincipled persons did not have any place in the Congress.
Former minister Siddeque Ahmed, who was earlier involved in dissidence activities and dropped by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi for his alleged anti-party activity, also attended the meeting. He said that Sarma was actually leading dissidents to fulfil his personal agenda and used ministers and MLAs like him as tools to fulfil his personal agenda, which they could not understand earlier.
APCC president Anjan Dutta urged senior leaders to take forward the party's mission to remove poverty and bring about development of the country and Assam in particular by maintaining communal harmony and peace.
The meeting was attended by more than 200 party members including CWC member Hemoprava Saikia, former Governor Debananda Konwar, former PCC President Paban Singh Ghatowar, senior ministers Bhumidhar Barman and Sarat Barkakaty, Rajya Sabha MPs Pankaj Bora and Naznin Faruque among others.