Guwahati: Debabrata Saikia, the opposition leader in the Assam Legislative Assembly, on Friday urged the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) to bar CM Himanta Biswa Sarma from campaigning for the upcoming by-poll in the state’s five assembly constituencies slated on October 30.
“There have been several recent instances where the Chief Minister has violated the EC’s model code of conduct for which I am demanding that he is barred from campaigning for the October 30 by-elections in Assam,” Saikia said in a letter to CEM Anup Chandra Pandey.
“The Chief Minister had at a by-election campaign meeting under Bhawanipur constituency pointed to a person in the crowd and said he should be given a house and also asked that whosoever is responsible for allocation of houses in that locality to provide him with a house under the PMAY. As there is a clear-cut policy for allotment of PMAY houses, the Chief Minister isn’t supposed to and authorised to allot any house. The Chief Minister publicly said the person has no house and he should be given a house, going beyond existing official guidelines to identify persons who are suitable and who are not for allotment of a PMAY house,” Saikia said in the letter.
“The action of the chief minister will make the people think that anyone attending the Chief Minister’s meeting will get a house, which is not true and clearly a violation of the model code of conduct,” Saikia said.
“The chief minister has also been repeatedly making a statement while campaigning that for the development of any constituency, the primary condition is to ensure the MLA belongs to the ruling party or the ruling alliance. During the filing of nomination by the candidate of Thowra in Sivasagar, the Chief Minister had stated his intention to develop Thowra but added that it would not be possible if the MLA is from opposition Congress.” Saikia also said.
Notably, Sushanta Borgohain who had won the assembly election on a Congress ticket resigned to contest on a BJP ticket in the by-elections.
Saikia also alleged that the Chief Minister has been openly patronising a system of governance where development will not be possible if the MLA is not from the ruling party.
“At a meeting in Bhawanipur, the Chief Minister has openly stated that he will give Rs 2,000 crore worth of development projects if the sitting MLA joined the ruling party. He had also revealed publicly that as a precondition, the opposition MLA had submitted a 32-point charter of demands, and he has accepted all without even reading it as the MLA had decided to quit the opposition and join the ruling BJP,” the Opposition leader alleged.
“Yesterday, while campaigning at five election meetings in Thowra, the Chief Minister declared that he will set up one medical college at Thowra and construction of two bridges over to rivers at Thowra. This is it total violation of the model code of conduct given by the election commission. The Chief Minister has lowered the prestige of Parliamentary System, the Indian Election System and the Indian Constitution,” he added.
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