Assam

Guwahati, June 8, 2019:

It was a felicitation programme of meritorious students organized by Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) in Guwahati on Saturday when the Assam Chief Minister “forgot” to mention Education Minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya. Was it intentional? Or an unintentional blunder by the Assam Chief Minister?

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When Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal started his speech, he mentioned all the names of his newly elected party MPs and even office bearers of BJYM but left out education minister Siddhartha Bhattacharya who was present on the stage. Sonowal also did not mention BJP state president Ranjeet Dass’ name in his speech.

This has raised many an eyebrow. This was a programme for the students. And it is a courtesy to mention the name of education minister in the speech, but Sonowal thought it was not pertinent to mention the name of the minister sitting on the dias.

The BJP party is supposed to be high on morale after its crushing victory in the recently concluded Lok Sabha election, as Narendra Modi has been installed as the Prime Minister at the centre, and the BJP nabbed nine seats in the election in Assam, but does this ‘mistake’ by Sonowal of forgetting to mention the Education Minister at an education-related event show a rift in the party at the state level?

It may be mentioned that all has been not well in the Assam Unit BJP party in recent times — longtime party member R P Sarmah had rebelled after being denied a party ticket. Does Sonowal’s apparent snub of Bhattacharya show that there is perhaps more discord among the top rankers of the state administration?

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