With every passing day, the high-voltage political drama in Assam is becoming intense. Even though earlier it was predicted that this time the competition will be between three major political parties—BJP, Congress and AIUDF, however, post denial of election tickets by the respective parties, a number of top leaders and even sitting MLAs have now decided to contest independently in the polls. Following are some of the existing MLAs who will fight independently and will give tough competition to their opponents.
Hemanta Talukdar—West Guwahati MLA—Veteran Congress leader and sitting MLA Hemanta Talukdar filed his papers as an Independent candidate from West Gauhati constituency. Talukdar has been replaced by Juri Sarma Bordoloi, the chairperson of the State Khadi & Village Industries Development Board and former vice-chairperson of Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority.
Ghana Buragohain—Ex- North Lakhimpur MLA—Senior Congress leader has deserted the party and decided to contest alone after the party denied him a ticket. Burhagohain is the former Lakhimpur legislator who had lost to Asom Gana Parishad candidate Utpal Dutta in 2011 only by a margin of 1,099 votes. He has been replaced by Joy Prakash Das, former leader of the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI), the student wing of the party.
Amiya Gogoi- Duliajan MLA—Gogoi is four-time Congress legislator from Duliajan. This veteran politician holds considerable power over voters, and won for the first time in the 1985 polls which saw other Congress candidates suffering heavy defeats at the hands of Independents who later went on to form Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) under the leadership of Prafulla Kumar Mahanta. In 2011, she defeated Rameshwar Teli by a margin of 3,336 votes. Amiya Gogoi has been replaced by a newcomer Dhruba Jyoti Gogoi during this poll.
In 2016, Assam Legislative Assembly elections the numbers of independent candidates have gone up by 76.8 percent compared to 2011 elections.