With Assembly elections in Assam only months away, BJP President JP Nadda on Monday launched party’s poll campaign in the state, asserting it will return to power for the second consecutive term by winning hundred plus seats in the 126-member House.

The party since the 2016 assembly win in the state has emerged victorious in all the elections-whether it be the Parliamentary, byelections, zilla parishads, panchayats, territorial or autonomous councils-and will come to power again in the next assembly polls, Nadda said while addressing ”Vijay Sankalp” rally at the police parade ground in Silchar.

“This has been possible due to all-round development of all sections of the people and the entire state by the government of Sarbananda Sonowal with the support of Prime Minister Narendra Modi”, he said.

Its BJP’s “double engine” government at the centre and the state that has led to proper implementation of all the schemes in the various sectors, he said.

“It is in the entire country that people have time and again reposed faith in Modi ji which has resulted in the BJP winning almost all elections at all levels”, Nadda said.

Recent elections at Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat, Karnataka, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and North East have shown that people want to be part of Modi ji”s “model of development” and they also served as an example of “how a party and the government can work together”.

Starting BJP’s poll campaign from the Barak valley, which has a sizeable population of the Hindu Bengalis, is significant as it was here that the party had began its journey in the state winning two Lok Sabha seats and nine assembly seats for the first time in the early nineties.

Barak valley comprises of 15 assembly segments in the three districts of Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi districts. Polls in Assam is due in March-April this year. The BJP president, harping on the development agenda of the government, steered clear of the twin issues of National Register of Citizens (NRC) which was published in 2019 but is yet to be implemented and Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) which created a stir in the rest of Assam but was welcomed in the Barak valley.

Nadda asserted that BJP has given due recognition and protection to Assam’s culture, language and identity. He pointed out that it was Atal Bihari Vajpayee who had taken the demands raised during the Assam agitation against the foreigners to both inside and outside the Parliament. It was Vajpayee who raised the slogan- “Srinagar ho ya Guwahati…..Kerala ho ya Guwahati…..apni desh, apni maati” (whether it be Srinagar or Guwahati, Kerala or Guwahati….it is our nation, our land”). Highlighting the saffron party”s attachment with Assam, Nadda said it was the BJP government that bestowed Bharat Ratna on Lokopriyo Gopinath Bordoloi and Bhupen Hazarika-the former when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister and the latter by Modi ji, he added.

Prime Minister Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah resolved the 50-year old Bodo issue by signing Bodo Accord due to which the territorial integrity of the state remained intact and the militants were also brought to the mainstream. More than four thousand people had lost their lives but the BJP took all the stakeholders into confidence and the Bodo Accord in January last year ensured that their demands were given due recognition along with a Rs 1500 crore as a rehabilitation package for the militants, Nadda pointed out. In neighbouring Tripura, too, the long-standing Bru-Reang standoff has been resolved with a package of Rs 600 crore and 36,000 internally displaced families rehabilitated, he added.

The Land Boundary Agreement with neighbouring Bangladesh and the subsequent land swap has also allayed the fear of the people of Assam, he said. The subsequent smart fencing project of the border will also solve the problem of trafficking which is rampant in Assam, he added.

During the 15-year Congress rule in the state,2155 civilians and 284 security forces personnel were killed,1200 persons were kidnapped, 51 percent of the population had no power and 56 percent were without toilets, he alleged. Attacking the Congress further, Nadda said they started projects and delayed the work which escalated the cost but never completed those projects.

After the BJP government came to power in Assam in 2016, it completed the Bhupen Hazarika Bridge, Bogibeel Bridge and the Gas Cracker Project in the state, he said.

The new projects include the All India Institute of Medical Sciences at Guwahati to be set up at a cost of Rs 13,500 crore with a recurring cost of Rs 2000 crore annually and “I am fortunate to sanction this when I was the Union Health Minister”, Nadda said.

He also claimed that the Numaligarh Refinery was given a boost and the bio-refinery upgraded, 15 new national highways were created, 21 state highways upgraded and five new bridges will be set up over the river Brahmaputra. It was due to Modi”s initiative that 35 lakh toilets were made and Assam became Open Defecation Free, along with providing 17 lakh new gas connections, leading to women empowerment, he said. Referring to the state government”s initiative of providing scooty and cycles to girl students, Nadda said this was “a way of showing respect to women and providing them with an opportunity to pursue education and get empowered”. PTI