The Congress is back into forming the state government in Assam and Tarun Gogoi is set to become the chief minister of Assam for historic third-term-a feat never which has never been achieved by any person before in Assam. People of Assam had expected this, as Congress had no major competition in Assam. BJP is still struggling to establish its base in Assam, while the only other major party Asom Gono Parishad has tarnished its image to such an extent that none in Assam wants to allow it to form the government again. Alliances were formed but in vain. But the focus of this article shall be limited to understanding the political behavior and also the analysing the current political discussion within in the community in recent times.
The Misings are the second largest tribe of Assam with population of over one and a half million. It was assumed that the Misings this time voted on the lines of the community’s’ demand for sixth schedule more than any other issue. How far is has the characterstics been revealed in the results demands a more fine-grained analysis. Two questions are tormenting the Misings at the moment?
1. How did Bhubon Pegu loose from a mising dominated constituency of Jonai?
2. How did the veteran Bharat Narah who has not yet lost any election for more than three terms loose this time?
The answers that the mising people or the so called ‘political analyst’ youth give to the above questions are quite simple. The answer for the first question is because, the Mising community betrayed him or because the TMPK cadres did not work well. Quite a superfluous analysis, I must say. We shall focus on the same in coming parts of the essay.
And the answer to the second question is the most obvious and the most expected-Because Bharat Narah has been indulging in nepotism and corruption for the past 25 years, so people were fed up of him. The way he handled the Matmara Flood crisis also angered the Misings in Dhakuakhana. Thus, they decided to vote for Naba doley, an AGP candidate this time.
My article again shall focus more to answer the first question as I belong to the Jonai Constituency and was home when voting was on. I find the answers provided as an explanation for the defeat of Mr. Bhubon pegu because, I cannot believe that the voter today can be fooled or is yet to have voting maturity. Common people do have preferences and vote on many lines. The declaration of the Mising community ‘betraying’ Mr. Pegu seems to me like an arguement which is just made to shorten a deeper analysis. It was assumed that the Mising community on the lines of Sixth Schedule but if it was the case, the result would perhaps have been otherwise. Many even criticise that the EVM machines were mishandled to orchestrate Mr. Pradan Baruah’s win. I again find it hard to accept as it seems to me like a complete negation of the results and resistance to accept the results. I shall cite a few of my experiences to substantiate my arguement. I was on my way back to my home town as soon as the elections were over and I sought to conduct an exit poll of sort to understand the outcome of the results. Many opined that they had voted for the congress government because they were happy with the government in the state. The working class voted because they were sure that they would get their salaries on time, under the congress government. While the poor voted the current government also had introduced many pro-poor policies, which clearly depicted the politics in the centre had a lot to do with the state politics and also that the poor were aware of the policies and programs and its impacts on the poor.
Bhuban had of course, made many loud noises but perhaps those loud noises were not enough. And again, he did not care about his public image and acted arbitrary many times. He also had to face a corruption charges. Many even told me that his ‘militaristic’ behavior was also one of the main reasons for his downfall. A good result for the Misings of Jonai if he would have won would perhaps have been that they would have got someone who would have voiced the demands for the inclusion of the community in the sixth Schedule.
One other important characterstics witnessed in Mr Bhuban Pegu was that he focussed a lot on macro issues. He joined hands with Mr. Akhil Gogoi and created huge noises against Anti-dam and corruption in the state, while his constituency people waited for him to do some concrete work for them. Many again branded Mr. Gogoi as mere agent of the Asom Gana Parishad.
All these factors led to the decline of the Mr. Pegu. Whatever be the reasons, one thing is for sure that it is not a very happy news for the Misings in the Jonai Constituency.
(P.S.- The above essay is my personal analysis, based on my experiences and observations and are not sacrosanct. It would of course be nice if we could carry on more discussions on this line )