GUWAHATI: BJP's maiden electoral victory ending the 15-year rule of Tarun Gogoi-led Congress government, protests against a proposed bill granting citizenship status to Hindu Bangladeshis and arrest of Assam Public Service Commission in cash-for-job scam were some of the major developments in Assam during 2016.
The state witnessed sporadic incidents of violence. Fourteen people were killed by NDFB militants at a market place in Kokrajhar in August while three army personnel were gunned down by ULFA-I militants at Pengeri in Tinsukia district.
Rhino killings in the state continued unabated with 16 pachyderms falling prey to poachers while human-elephant conflict assumed alarming proportions with nearly 20 elephants killed during the year despite eviction drives of encroachers from Kaziranga and Manas national parks.
The assembly elections were a litmus test for the BJP which launched an aggressive campaign to make its foray into the northeast with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief Amit Shah leading the campaign.
BJP and its allies registered a historic win in the two- phase elections in April capturing 88 seats while Congress, adversely affected by a strong anti-incumbency factor, managed to win only 26 of the 122 seats it contested.
BJP, led by then Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal, registered wins in 60 of the 89 seats it contested while its allies-- AGP won 14 seats, BPF 12 and the Rabha and Tiwa Aikya Manchas a seat each.
Chief Minister Sonowal and his 10-member cabinet took oath of office at a grand public ceremony attended by top brass of the party, including Modi, Shah, veteran L K Advani and all chief ministers of BJP-ruled states.
BJP's winning spree continued in the subsequent bypoll to the Lok Sabha seat vacated by Sonowal and the Baithalangso assembly constituency.