The BJP, which denied a party ticket to Hojai MLA Shiladitya Dev for the ensuing Assam Assembly elections, has finally managed to keep him within the party fold.
Shiladitya Dev, who was upset over the party’s decision to drop him as a candidate for the Hojai Assembly seat, announced that he would contest the Assam Assembly elections as an Independent candidate.
But Shiladitya Dev’s announcement to fight the Assembly election as an Independent candidate jolted the BJP and the party leaders took no time to console him.
The party first sent Assam minister of state for health Pijush Hazarika to convince Dev and on Friday, Assam’s powerful minister Himanta Biswa Sarma along with party’s national general secretary Dilip Saikia reached Hojai to request him to withdraw his decision to contest as Independent.
The party came into an understanding with MLA Dev with a promise to keep him in the BJP with proper respect, giving some responsibility.
Talking to media persons at Hojai on Friday, Assam finance minister and convenor of North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) Himanta Biswa Sarma was all praise for Hojai MLA Shiladitya Dev.
Sarma said they had a discussion with former MLA Sushil Dutta, Hojai BJP president Ram Krishna Ghosh and Lumding MLA Shibu Mishra regarding the strategies to retain the Hojai and Lumding seats in the ensuing Assam Assembly elections.
Regarding the resignation of Shiladitya Dev from the BJP, Sarma said, “It has recently been reported in media that Hojai MLA Shiladitya Dev has resigned from BJP. I want to inform the public that Shiladitya Dev was a worker of the BJP, he is still a BJP worker and will remain as BJP worker in the future.”
“Shiladitya Dev will be given responsibility to campaign for the party in different parts of the state for the Assembly election. He will also campaign for the BJP candidates in both Hojai and Lumding seats,” minister Sarma said.
Mangaldai MP and BJP’s national general secretary Dilip Saikia said, “We all know about the contributions of MLA Shiladitya Dev to the development of Hojai constituency in the last 5 years and the people are also aware of it.”
“But the BJP is a national party and following the rules of the party, we had to take some decisions. So, we have fielded Ramkrishna Ghosh in Hojai and Shibu Mishra has been given ticket again to contest from Lumding,” Saikia said.
He said, “Being a committed party worker, Ramkrishna Ghosh knows the pulse of the people of Hojai while Shiladitya Dev with his development works in the last 5 years has made the people of Hojai feel proud.”
“Ramkrishna Ghosh is our party candidate while Shiladitya Dev will be there in support. We have now no differences,” he claimed.
Saikia announced that Shiladitya Dev will be given responsibility in the party soon.
BJP national general secretary Saikia also announced that Shiladitya Dev would be rehabilitated with proper respect if the party comes to power after the election.