The April 4 battle for Assam- What to watch out for
Assam goes to polls on April 4th. On April 4th the state polls in the first phase where the fates of candidates contesting the 65 constituencies (totally 126) will be tested.
The BJP sees hope in Assam and is banking on an aggressive campaign and the anti incumbency factor against Tarun Gogoi.
All eyes will be on the Assam polls on April 4th and many would say that the first phase would set the tone for the remaining phases.
Experts would say that the BJP is in with a chance in Assam, although some exit polls have predicted a hung assembly.
Crucial first phase:
The BJP hopes to continue from where it left off. In the 2014 Parliamentary elections, the party put up a good showing and took away seats from areas that were traditionally the strong hold of the Congress party.
The Congress on the other hand which has been in power for one and half decades has a tough battle on hand.
Tarun Gogoi is a popular face in Assam, but faces the anti incumbency factor.
However, he has been pushing the developmental plank all through his campaign and is hoping to get another term.
The BJP however points out that the rallies addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi have helped. His speeches focused largely on development and this will help overcome the Congress campaign.
Moreover, he was a major factor in 2014 and the BJP hopes that this would continue in the assembly elections as well.
The issue of illegal immigration from Bangladesh was brought up several times during this campaign. The indigenous communities of Assam are most affected by the illegal immigrants and have sought protection several times in the past.
During the campaign the BJP has addressed this issue and assured to drive out the illegal immigrants apart from sealing the Bangladesh border.
In addition to this the BJP would also look to make gains through the peace accord with the pro-talks faction of the ULFA.
However, the deal had to be put on hold due to the election code of conduct. The BJP has however managed to convey the message that as part of this deal, the indigenous communities in Assam would be granted Schedule Tribe status.