Last Minute Prediction for Post-Poll in Assam


As the counting date is approaching, political leaders, workers and analysts have gone for last minute prediction and speculation on various parties’ performance in the two phases of Assam election in Northeast India. The pertinent question that arises, whether any party can get sufficient seats in the Legislative Assembly to form the government at Dispur. The counting of votes are due on Friday, 13th of 2011. If a single party cannot manage the required number of elected representatives, what are the other options?

Finally who can make a natural and sustainable ally to whom? Who can not or should not go for alliance with whom? All have been continuously discussed in public forum, media column and television talk shows. Assam this time witnessed a peaceful elections where nearly two crore electorates exercised their franchises without any fear and favouritism to any particular party. The overall percentage of voting was recorded as high as 76 percent.

This time no major political alliances were observed in the pre-poll scenario. Parties like Indian National Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party and All India United Democratic Front contested the election without pre-poll allies. Even the ruling ally of the Congress in Assam, Bodoland People’s Front contested all the constituencies in Bodo dominated areas separately. Only the main opposition party Asom Gana Parishad had pre-poll alliances with some ethnic parties like Bodo People’s Progressive Front, Gana Shakti and Autonomous State Demand Committee. Earlier the AGP had managed to unite its break away factions under one leadership.

The AGP leaders are now thinking of inviting the BJP to form an alliance. In fact, senior AGP leaders like CM Patowary and PK Mahanta have urged the political parties to come forward to prevent the Congress from attaining power for consecutive third time in Assam. The State BJP leaders have shown interest in the alliance, though the others like AIUDF and Left parties have put few conditions. Senior BJP leader Vijay Goel, who is in-charge of Assam, made an official statement that they are open to post-poll engagement with the AGP to ‘keep the ruling Congress out of power’ in the State. Mr Goel even claimed that his party would get sufficient seats this time to make deal with the AGP to form the government. He however clarified that the BJP would not go for any alliance with the AIUDF and Left parties.

The same was reverted by the AIUDF leader Aditya Langthasa that his party would not support any alliance with the BJP in its fold. The Congress, which is not confident this time, has opened the door to the minority dominated AIUDF. The party has reiterated its ongoing understanding with the BPF chief Hagrama Mohilary. But at least in one occasion Mr Mohilary hinted that they might think of supporting the AGP-BJP alliance at Dispur (if not the Congress). So both the AIUDF and BPF may get the opportunity to be the kingmaker this time, as no major parties are expecting single majority (64 MLAs) in the intensely contested polls.

Nava Thakuria is a Guwahati (Northeast India) based journalist, who contributes to NewsBlaze and various media outlets throughout the world.