[Assam] PM may contest from Guwahati LS seat

muktikam phukan muktikamp at yahoo.co.in
Wed Mar 4 19:58:06 PST 2009

PM may contest from Guwahati LS seat
Kalyan Barooah
 NEW DELHI, March 4 – Is Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh contesting the Lok Sabha polls from Guwahati? Though none of the Congress Party’s top leadership is willing to hazard a guess, recent developments have roused the curiosity among Party leaders. In the face of it, the chances appear remote given that the Prime Minister has undergone a major redo surgery and was recuperating until till today. On Wednesday, he met the Visiting president of Benning, Boni Yayi at his official residence. Under the circumstances, he may not be keen on going through the rigours of campaigning.

However, what has led to evoked interest in the Party is that the Prime Minister has recently had all the relevant documents necessary for filing nomination including voter’s list of Dispur constituency, his updated lease agreement faxed to Delhi. His official address is: House No. 3989, Nandan Nagar, Ward No. 51, Sarumataria, Dispur, Guwahati, District Kamrup. 

The Deputy Commissioner’s Office of Kamrup district burnt mid night oil to prepare the documents on orders from the top and had them faxed to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), highly placed sources confided.

While entry of the Prime Minister would change the election scenario as far as Guwahati Lok Sabha seat is concerned, the Congress Party’s election campaign in the State itself would get a huge morale boost, party sources admitted.

However, PCC president, Bhubaneswar Kalita when contacted ruled out the possibility. There is no possibility of the Prime Minister contesting from Guwahati, he asserted.

Kirip Chaliha the sitting MP, when asked about it, said he was unaware about it and the issue has not been discussed at any of the election related meetings either. “This is news to me, but if the Prime Minister decides to contest, then he does not have to campaign in Guwahati, we will ensure his victory,” he asserted.

The development is significant in light of the statement by Leader of the Opposition L K Advani last month. He demanded that the Constitution be amended to make it mandatory for the Prime Minister to be a member of the Lok Sabha.

"I am personally of the view that the Constitution should be amended to make it mandatory for the Prime Minister to be a member of the Lower House," Advani said on the last day of sitting of the 14th Lok Sabha.

By convention, most Prime Ministers in the past were members of the Lok Sabha but at present "we have had a Prime Minister who is not a member of the Lok Sabha".

The Congress Party had rejected it and Union Home Minister, P Chidambaram had reacted to Advani’s statement by saying that several Rajya Sabha MPs in the past held position of importance in the Government.

Muktikam Phukan 
Deputy Director (FA)
Petroleum Conservation Research Association
Sanrakshan Bhawan,10, Bhikaiji Cama Place,New Delhi 110066
Ph: +91 11 26198856 Ext 385, Mob: +91 9818598565
email: phukanm at pcra.org , muktikamp at yahoo.co.in 

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