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Only BJP-led coalition can ensure illegal immigrant-free Assam: Amit Shah

Launching a ₹188 crore project for the development of Batadrava Than, Shah slammed Congress for not doing anything for the birthplace of Srimanta Sankardev despite being in power in the state for several terms

PUBLISHED ON FEB 25, 2021 03:16 PM IST

Union home minister Amit Shah on Thursday slammed the Congress, All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) and newly formed regional parties and asserted that only Bharatiya Janata Party and its alliance partner Asom Gana Parishad can ensure peace, development and illegal immigrant-free Assam.

“There was a time when Assam was known for agitations and violence. The biggest contribution of the Narendra Modi government in Centre is to establish peace in Assam, ensure development, give corruption-free administration, rid the state of agitations and put a break on the entry of illegal immigrants,” Shah said at a rally in Batadrava Than, the birthplace of 15th-16th century Vaishnavite saint-scholar and social reformer Srimanta Sankardev.

Launching a 188 crore project for the development of Batadrava Than, Shah slammed Congress for not doing anything for the birthplace of Srimanta Sankardev despite being in power in the state for several terms.

The Union home minister accused the Congress of not being with the people of the state and only appearing at the time of election. Without naming them, Shah targeted the new regional parties in the state.

“Congress is seen only when election comes. At other times they indulge in merriment in Delhi. They are doing the same thing this time. In this election, another thing is being witnessed,” said Shah, adding, “Congress was responsible for firing at those who took part in the Assam Agitation (to oust illegal immigrants). Now in order to bring Congress to power and cut BJP’s vote share, organisations that were part of that agitation have now come out with different names.”

Shah’s barbs were aimed at Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) formed last year by All Assam Students Union (AASU) and Assam Jatiyatabadi Yuva Chatra Parishad (AJYCP), two prominent student bodies which were at the forefront of the Assam Agitation of 1979-85 that ended with signing of Assam Accord in 1985, as well as at Raijor Dal, a new party formed by Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), a farmers’ rights body. The three organisations—AASU, AJYCP and KMSS—had spearheaded the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests in December 2019. AJP and Raijor Dal are contesting the upcoming polls together.

“Everyone knows they (those parties) won’t win. Even they know they won’t win. But their attempt at helping Congress is very sad. Do they think people of Assam can’t see through this? The people of the state know than only a BJP and Asom Gana Parishad government can ensure a developed, peaceful and illegal immigrant free Assam,” said Shah.

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The Union minister slammed the “grand alliance” of Congress and perfume baron Badruddin Ajmal’s All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF). “Can those sitting with Ajmal stop illegal immigration? Can they stop killing of rhinos?” he said.

Shah said that Centre is committed towards putting an end to the annual cycle of floods that plague Assam, within the next five years. He said water from the Brahmaputra and its tributaries would be diverted to man-made reservoirs, which in turn could help in irrigation and also become tourist spots.

The Congress, however, refuted Shah’s claims. “It was the Congress that brought Assam out of conflict and militancy. It was Amit Shah’s CAA that pushed Assam back into conflict, curfews and violence. With peace there can be no progress. Assam wants Congress back,” tweeted Assam Congress president Ripun Bora.

Earlier Shah attended the “pran pratistha mahotsav” (consecration ceremony) of the Maha Mrityunjay temple at Nagaon, around 120km from Guwahati. The temple is shaped like a shivling, and at 126ft, is stated to be the tallest such structure in the world.

Shah is slated to address a unity, peace and development rally at Denarong in Karbi Anglong district where a peace agreement with five militant outfits of the region, which laid down arms on Tuesday, is expected to be inked.

The Union home minister will return to Delhi in the evening.

This is Shah’s third visit to Assam this year. Assembly polls in the state are due in April-May and the ruling BJP-led coalition is trying to win over 100 of the 126 seats in the state assembly.

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