Dynasty politics to face acid test in first phase of polls

Dynasty politics to face acid test in first phase of polls

Dynasty politics to face acid test in first phase of polls

When Assam’s former Congress minister Himanta Biswa Sarma left the party to join the BJP, one of the reasons he gave was his opposition to dynasty politics taking charge of mainstream Congress politics in Assam.

In the first phase of Assam assembly polls to be held on 4th April, the ruling Congress will be banking on many of the sons and daughters and other kith and kin of many Congress stalwarts who are contesting from the traditional Congress stronghold.

“It is only the Congress which gives scopes to young people. We might have a political lineage, but it is not that we are not working in politics. I have been involved in NSUI and Youth Congress politics for a long time. Moreover, if you look at all the young candidates whom the Congress has given tickets you will find that they are very well educated and have social service background. We are not like BJP who gave tickets to secret killers and criminals” said Angkita Dutta, Congress candidate from Amguri Assembly segment, a seat which was previously represented by her father Anjan Dutta, the president of Assam Congress.

Angkita is a lawyer and a PhD research scholar, who is very active on social media.

 She has been part of the social media campaign team of the Congress. “The Congress is the only party that promotes young people. We have given ticket to at least 60 candidates who are in their youth” Anjan Dutta told Deccan Herald.

It is not Angkita alone, state cabinet minister Gautam Roy’s son Rahul Roy is in the fray from Algapur Assembly seat in Southern Assam. Rajdeep Goala, son of once Congress bigwig late Dinesh Prasad Goala is seeking re-election from Lakhipur seat which has been with the family for decades. The tribal face of Congress politics in Assam, Gobinda Chandra Langthasa's son, Nirmal is contesting from Haflong constituency in Dima Hasao district. Also in the fray are Diganta Barman from Barkhetri, son for former chief minister Bhumidhar Barman, former chief minister Hiteshwar Saikia’s son Debabrata Saikia. 

In Sarupathar of Goaghat district, the Congress has given ticket to Rosalina Tirkey, daughter of Congress legislator Akilus Tirkey and in neighbouring Bokajan, Klengdoon Engti is seeking mandate for his second term as MLA.

“We are from political families and we have seen it all right from childhood. So the connect is always there. These are traditional Congress seat where the family factor works” said Klengdoon, who is the son of veteran parliamentarian Biren Sing Engti.

If that is not enough, then we have Diganta, son of state minister Bhumidhar Barman, fighting the polls from the Assembly seat. Klengdoon Engti, son of former parliamentarian Biren Sing Engti, is the Congress candidate from Bokajan.

In fact the son of chief minister Tarun Gogoi and Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi did campaign for many of these sons and daughters.

“Why can’t the Congress give scope to people from families who are talented but not from any dynasty? In the centre, they have the Gandhis, in Assam they have the Gogois, Duttas, Roys and the Devs,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said. The BJP has made the ‘mini-dynasties’ within Assam politics a key poll issue.

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