[Assam] Cong to field Manmohan in Assam RS seat

umesh sharma jaipurschool at yahoo.com
Wed May 2 10:40:57 PDT 2007

why again for nominated RS seat. Hasn't he got the confidence to get elected - now that he is Prime Minister? Is it real democracy?

muktikam phukan <muktikamp at yahoo.co.in> wrote:
            Guwahati, Tuesday, May 01, 2007 
  Cong to field Manmohan in State RS seat
>From Kalyan Barooah
 NEW DELHI, April 30 – The Congress has decided against fielding a second candidate for the Rajya Sabha and Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh is going to be the lone candidate from Assam. Hours after the Election Commission announced the biennial elections to the Council of States, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi met the Prime Minister to pledge the Rajya Sabha seat for him for the third time in a row. The formality of the Congress nominating his name is likely to follow.

“In keeping with his wishes, we are not going to field the second candidate from our party,” he told this newspaper.

With the Congress deciding to field only one candidate, re-election of Dr Singh is going to just a matter of formality. The Congress has 53 seats besides the six associate members. In addition, it also enjoys the support of its alliance partner BPPF (12) and NCP (1). The Opposition, however, is going to on a sticky wicket as none of the parties are in a position to get its candidate elected independently.

Earlier, the Election Commission of India declared that the election to the post would be held on May 24, while the formal notification would be issued on May 7. The last date of filing nomination expires on May 14 and the last date of withdrawal is May 17. The counting of votes would take place the same day at 5 pm. The entire process is slated to be completed by May 28.

The other sitting MP who is going to retire is Indramoni Bora of BJP. The term of both the Prime Minister and Bora expires on June 14.

Meanwhile, though there were a few aspirants from the Congress are for the second seat, the AICC as well as Assam Congress is in no mood to take a chance.

A senior party leader, however, made a strong case for fielding a second candidate arguing that as the voting for the RS is going to be through open ballot, there is little possibility of the MLAs defying the Whip and thereby facing expulsion under the anti-defection laws.

However, the State Congress leadership is not willing to offend the Prime Minister.

Meanwhile, Gogoi may have alter his travel plans to Australia and Singapore, as the Prime Minister’s election is going to clash with his official tour. The Chief Minister is part of the State Finance Ministers’ delegation that is leaving for the two-nation tour on May 12.

The Chief Minister said he has to be present when the Prime Minister files his nomination papers.

Meanwhile, Gogoi today met External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee to urge him to exert pressure on the new dispensation in Dhaka to act against leaders of the militant outfits like ULFA. He also urged similar steps by Myanmar Government to launch a crackdown on militants operating from that country.

The External Affairs Minister reportedly briefed him about the situation in the two countries and reportedly said that India is closely watching the developments in the neighbourhood, particularly in Bangladesh.

Later, the Chief Minister told this newspaper that apart from action on militants, he also conveyed that Assam, as well as other States in the region, were keen to improve its trade ties with Bangladesh.

“Improving our trading relations with the neighbouring countries is now our focus of attention,” he said.

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Umesh Sharma

Washington D.C. 

1-202-215-4328 [Cell]

Ed.M. - International Education Policy
Harvard Graduate School of Education,
Harvard University,
Class of 2005



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