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Now, AIUDF legislator joins BJP in Assam, after 2 Cong MLAs

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Guwahati, Sep 2. After two Congress MLAs, opposition AIUDF legislator, Phanidhar Talukdar joined ruling BJP after resigning from the membership of the Assam assembly, official and party sources said on Thursday.

An Assam Assembly official said that the All India United Democratic Front MLA from Bhabanipur constituency submitted his resignation to Speaker Biswajit Daimary. With Talukdar’s resignation, five assembly seats fell vacant.

A senior leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party said that Talukdar on Wednesday met Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma who welcomed him into the saffron party fold.

The BJP leader said that Talukdar went to the state party headquarters on Wednesday night and formally joined the party in presence of state party President Bhabesh Kalita.

Talukdar, who defeated BJP’s ally Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) candidate Ranjit Deka, on Thursday said he quit the AIUDF for “the larger interest” of the people of his constituency as well as Assam and would work for the welfare of the people of the state.

Talukdar was the lone Hindu lawmaker in Muslim based party, the AIUDF, whose strength in the 126-member Assam assembly has now gone down to 15.

BJP sources said that the party might give ticket to Talukdar in the ensuing by-elections to Bhabanipur seat in western Assam.

On August 1, two-time Assam Congress MLA, Sushanta Borgohain joined the BJP while on June 21, four-time Congress legislator and prominent Assam tea garden leader Rupjyoti Kurmi had deserted the party and joined the saffron fold.

In the March-April assembly elections, the BJP won 60 seats while its electoral allies AGP and United People’s Party Liberal (UPPL) secured nine and six seats respectively. Former Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, who is currently a Union Minister, is yet to resign from the assembly.

The Congress, which governed Assam for 15 years (2001-2016), managed 29 seats in the last assembly elections, three more than 2016 polls, when it lost Assam to the BJP. Of the other partners of the Congress led 10-party “Mahajot”, the AIUDF won 16 seats up from 13 last time, the Bodoland Peoples Front (BPF) got four seats against 12, and the Communist Party of India-Marxist won just one seat.

The Assam Congress after a core committee meeting presided by Congress President Bhupen Kumar Borah earlier this week announced that the AIUDF and BPF would no longer be partners of the ‘Mahajot’ (Grand Alliance) in the state. Borah had told the media that the party has decided to sever ties with the Badruddin Ajmal-led AIUDF and tribal party BPF.

Two MLAs – one each from UPPL and BPF – had died.

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Call me “Dada”, not “Sir”, Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb to employees

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Agartala: In what appears to be a step to boost the morale of the government employees, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Sunday asked the government employees to call him “Dada” instead of “Sir”. “Call me Dada, not sir. It enhances the warmth of the relationship”, Deb told a gathering of government employees.

Deb exhorted the government employees of the state especially ASHA and Anganwadi workers of the state asking them not to dishearten as the state government was eager to improve their pay structure.

“I salute the ASHA and Anganwadi workers of my state. The level of dedication that my sisters have shown during the pandemic period deserved applause. I know, they want to hear good news from me and I am assuring you all that this government will not disappoint anyone”, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb told a gathering of government employees at Badharghat sports school field organized by Vivekananda Vicha Manch (VVM).

VVM has emerged as a big platform of government employees, of late, and Sunday’s public rally was its first big gathering to thank the Chief Minister for the series of steps his government took for the welfare of the employees.

“I know what challenges you people are facing. Nothing is hidden in front of me. I am assuring you all everything will be taken care of in the due course of time”, he added.  Lauding the efforts of government employees Deb said, without them no government office can function.

“Due to the efforts of government employees, people can access the benefits of the state sponsored welfare schemes. But, for a prolonged period the employees did not get their right to do something freely. They were trapped in the clutches of unions. In the previous regime, Left sponsored unions used to enjoy supreme power which had reduced the whole work culture of the state to tatters. In 2018, you people showed courage and voted BJP to power”, said Deb.

“Despite fund constraints, the state government is positively working on the issues of DA and other factors pertaining to the interest of the government employees. Our government has already addressed a number of issues related to financial benefits. The ad-hoc promotion, increment for Group D, Group C employees, regularization of SSA teachers, seventh pay scale, UGC scale for professors, special benefit for LTC are to name a few. All these indicate what we want to do and we shall do what we promise”, the Chief Minister said.

The Chief Minister also asked the officials not to call him “sir” suggesting them to refer to him as “Dada” as it makes the relationship stronger and cherished. The Chief Minister also distributed clothes among children of Badharghat sports school during the programme. State BJP President Manik Saha, Minister Ram Prasad Paul, Minister Sushanta Chowdhury, MLA Mimi Majumder, state BJP Vice President and president of Vivekananda Vichar Manch Rajib Bhattacharjee also spoke on the occasion.

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