The Telegraph
Monday , May 19 , 2014
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Rahul seeks poll debacle report

Jorhat, May 18: AICC secretary Rana Goswami will soon send a detailed report on the poll debacle in Assam to the party high command.

According to the directive of party vice-president Rahul Gandhi to identify the causes of the party’s worst performance in the parliamentary elections in the past seven polls since 1991, Goswami will file his assessment on the results by finding out the causes of dismal show and also suggesting measures to prepare the party for the 2016 Assembly polls.

The Congress has managed to win only three seats this time coming down from the tally of seven it had won in 2009, and losers this time included veteran leaders, who were Union ministers in the UPA I and II government.

Party sources said the BJP winning two Lok Sabha seats in Upper Assam — Jorhat and Dibrugarh — by a convincing margin has sent alarm bells in the party, as Upper Assam has been a strong Congress bastion.

The BJP for the first time has opened its account in the region from which two Union ministers (Paban Singh Ghatowar and B.K. Handique) were in the UPA I and II and chief minister Tarun Gogoi is also from Upper Assam representing the Titabar constituency in Jorhat district.

Sources said the party high command, which was hoping that the Congress tally would go up this time, has been taken by surprise and wants to tie up all loose ends to face the 2016 Assembly polls.

Goswami told The Telegraph today that he has been asked by the party vice-president to make an assessment of the results (read poor performance), which has come as a shock to the party.

“Rahulji has asked me to file a detailed report on the results and find out causes for the debacle at the earliest. After pointing out the causes I shall offer certain suggestions to be taken by the party and by the state government to win back lost ground,” Goswami, who is also the Jorhat MLA and Jorhat district unit Congress president, said.

He said since 2001 after the Congress assumed power in the state, the party has been winning all kinds of elections be it Assembly, panchayat, civic and Lok Sabha polls and hence, the results were a “major setback”.

He said he would analyse the results and accordingly identify the causes and offer his assessment on the political situation along with steps to be taken to revamp the party.

“We have to see what went wrong in the party or impact of any decision by the government at the state or at the Centre,” Goswami said, refusing to divulge further.

Sources said the impact of the group of Congress dissident MLAs belonging to the anti-Tarun Gogoi camp trying to oust Gogoi since late 2012 was a factor in the party’s poor show.

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