GUWAHATI: Jailed peasant leader Akhil Gogoi on Monday made a call to the people to oust the “traitorous” BJP from power.
The ailing president of the newly-floated regional party Raijor Dal filed his nominations to the returning officers via video-conference from the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital in Guwahati. Election officials visited the facility to collect his nomination papers.
The 45-year-old, who visits the hospital periodically for a checkup, is contesting from Sivasagar and Mariani seats in Upper Assam.
In a six-page letter addressed to the people, he wrote: “It is time to bid adieu to the BJP and perform its ‘visarjan’ (immersion). The people of Assam should come out and defeat the traitorous BJP. We shall have to oust the BJP from power at any cost...”
He said the people should teach the BJP a lesson “for selling off the country”. He said by passing the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), the party invited 1.9 crore “Bangladeshis” to Assam.
Gogoi was arrested by the police in December 2019 when the protests against CAA turned violent, leading to loss of lives. Later, he was handed over to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in a case pertaining to his alleged links with the CPI (Maoist). The NIA had charged him with sedition, intention to cause riot against national integration, punishment for criminal conspiracy, and unlawful association under the Indian Penal Code and the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. He is lodged at the Central Jail in Guwahati.
Meanwhile, Lurinjyoti Gogoi, chief of another recently-floated party Asom Jatiya Parishad, also filed his nominations. He is contesting from Naharkatiya and Duliajan constituencies in Upper Assam. He had resigned from the All Assam Students’ Union to lead the party.
He is optimistic about his poll prospects.
“A regional party will form the government this time by ousting communal BJP. My victory in both seats is confirmed,” a confident Gogoi told journalists after filing his papers.