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“I am an extremist…”: Himanta on protecting Assamese culture

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Guwahati, Feb 15: Assam assembly elections are set to be held within approximately two months and heated is the political war-of-words among the parties in the Northeastern state. New regional parties have taken up contentious issues of NRC, CAA, etc. as their political agenda; while the ruling BJP speaks on topics ranging from Hindutva to development.

“I am proud to be an extremist if it is for saving the culture and pride of the Assamese people of my state”, senior cabinet minister and NEDA Convenor, Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma told reporters at Guwahati, in sidelines to the inauguration programme of three-foot overbridge in state capital Guwahati.

Yesterday Assam saw the visit of Senior Congressman and MP, Rahul Gandhi, at the Boarding School Playground in Sivasagar. This was Gandhi’s first political campaign here, ahead of the upcoming polls.

Reacting against Gandhi’s visit, Dr. Sarma said “The field in which Rahul has been given permission to hold a meeting holds a capacity of 15,000 people. A busy leader like him should not focused on a better target.” He, however, welcomed Gandhi’s visit to Assam.

On the campaign “Assam Bachao”, started by Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) in which four busses would criss-cross the state on awareness against alleged misgovernance by the ruling BJP and allies, Sarma referred that the state needs to be protected from the immigrant Muslims who came from Bangladesh and that the opposition is rather rallying in areas on such dominance.

Interestingly, the cabinet minister also highlighted the point of social media discussing the government grant of a scooty to each meritorious girl students of the state, and demands are being received to handover one each to the qualifying boys as well.

It may be mentioned that, Senior Congress Leader and MP Rahul Gandhi had arrived in Assam this afternoon to attend a party meeting at the Sivasagar’s Boarding playground. He travelled from Jorhat to Sivasagar in a party vehicle, named “Assam Bachao”, a part of Congress’ campaign against the ruling government.

Launching a strong criticism against the BJP-led state government in Assam, Rahul highlighted that CM Sarbananda Sonowal has failed to meet the expectations of the public and has also been unable to keep up to the pre-poll promises.

Against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), Gandhi was seen to have embedded “CAA”-mark on his traditional kurta, with criss-cross over the same.

On Former CM Late Tarun Gogoi, Rahul said that the Central government has insulted the people of Assam with lack of recognition to the leader who passed away, very recently.

Leaders, party workers, and supporters of the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) were seen waving Congress flags and cheering at the venue.

Meanwhile, APCC President Ripun Bora was at Sivasagar last night to take stock of the preparations.

“Supervising the preparation for tomorrow’s Mega Rally of Rahul Gandhi in the Historic town of Sibsagar! A step towards a New Dawn in Assam with all Congress leaders and workers!”, reads a tweet by Bora on Saturday, late evening.

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