GUWAHATI: Kicking off BJP’s campaign for the Lok Sabha election next year, party president Amit Shah set a target of winning at least 21 seats in the northeast, including Sikkim in the Lok Sabha election next year.
“In 2010, we won just five of the 25 seats in the northeast. In 2014, we won eight. Today, I set a target for all our workers – ensure our victory in 21 of the 25 seats,” Shah told the 25,000-strong gathering at the booth committee presidents’ meeting here, ahead of the panchayat election scheduled to be held in two months.
Launching a scathing attack on Congress and accusing it of indifference towards the northeast, Shah accused it of “almost giving away” Assam to Bangladesh during Partition and “deserting” the state when China invaded Arunachal Pradesh in 1962. “During Partition, Congress has clubbed all of Assam in Group C. Had Gopinath Bordoloi (first chief minister of Assam in independent India) and Gandhiji not opposed it, Assam would not have been a part of India. When China attacked, Nehru bid goodbye to Assam. Why? So many of our jawans sacrificed their lives,” Shah said. One of the proposals by the British Cabinet Mission before the Partition was categorizing states under three groups – roughly, one for Hindu-majority states, another for Muslim-majority states in the northwest and another comprising Bengal and Assam – that Congress had rejected. Drawing a contrast, Shah said the manner in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had dealt with Doklam was exemplary. “After Modiji’s stand on Doklam, no country would dare eye our borders,” he added.