GUWAHATI: Seventy organisations in Assam have given a joint call to the people of the state to boycott the BJP, its allies Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) and Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) besides minority-based All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) in Parliamentary elections.
The organisations, which had spearheaded a series of protests against Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and drummed up massive public support against it, are miffed with the BJP and its allies for continuously “betraying” people.
“The AGP has realigned with the BJP despite knowing that if the saffron party retains power at the Centre, it will pursue the Citizenship (Amendment), Bill. We have decided not to vote in favour of the BJP and its allies. We urge the people of Assam to boycott these parties in the polls,” RTI activist Akhil Gogoi, who is a leader of peasants’ body Krishak Mukti Sangram Samitee (KMSS), told reporters.
“It is a dangerous Bill and if it is passed in Parliament which the BJP said they would strive to ensure its passage, it will destroy the indigenous communities. Therefore, it is the responsibility of every Assamese to oppose this Bill,” he insisted.
The BJP favours Bill’s passage but the AGP is opposed to it. The Bill was the reason why the two parties had fallen apart in January until patching up and forging a pre-poll alliance last week. The BPF maintains a neutral position on the Bill.
The 70 organisations, some of them influential, have not asked the people to vote for opposition Congress. However, their stance against BJP, its allies and AIUDF is being viewed as an indirect campaign in favour of the Congress. Also, it is not comprehensible as to why they urged people to boycott the AIUDF. It never backed the Citizenship Bill.
“Through their call to boycott BJP, its allies and AIUDF, they are basically urging people to vote for the Congress. They are acting like the mouthpiece of the Congress,” BJP leader Dewan Dhrubajyoti Maral told this newspaper.
Even ahead of 2016 Assam elections, the KMSS had appealed to people to reject the “fascist” and “communal” BJP. The party, however, went on to grab 60 of the state’s 126 seats to open the gateway to the Northeast by forming the government in Assam.