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Congress minority votebank strong: Gogoi
April 04, 2006 21:19 IST
Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi asserted on Tuesday that there would be no erosion in the Congress minority vote base in the next phase of assembly polls on April 10, primarily in the minority-dominated constituencies.
"There is no erosion of minority votes as they have no issues on which to go against us. The Illegal Migrants Determination by Tribunal Act was repealed last year, but till today no minority or any genuine citizen has been harassed," Gogoi told reporters here.
At the same time, he asserted that the Congress government was '100 percent committed not to give protection to foreigners'.
On the issue of Shahi Imam Bukhari of the Jamma Masjid in Delhi campaigning for the United Democratic Front, which is a conglomerate of minority groups, Gogoi accused him of 'remembering the minorities in Assam for the first time. Why didn't he take up their cause when the IMDT Act was repealed?'
"Where is the question of minority appeasement by us as charged by the Bharatiya Janata Party and Asom Ghana Parishad? During the last election we got only 13 of the total 30 minority MLAs," Gogoi pointed out.
Asked if he foresaw the next government in the state as a coalition one, the chief minister gave no clear answer but said, "We will see after the results come out. The UDF (comprising breakaway Congress members) will also come to me".
On his party not projecting him as the next chief minister at the polls this time, Gogoi said, "I don't bother. I only want my party to come to power."
He also rejected BJP leader Pramod Mahajan's recent allegationsthat it was the 'height of hypocrisy on the part of the prime minister to bring the IMDT Act through the back door by an amendment to the Foreigners Act'.
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