A woman, who was always seen as a shadow by her husband’s side at the DCB Girls’ High School polling booth in Jorhat district during every election, could not exercise her franchise on Saturday.

Along with other parts of the state, the voters in Jorhat exercised their franchise in the first phase of the Assam Assembly election 2021.

But the Congress lost at least one vote by her absence.

The woman, Dolly Gogoi, wife of three-time chief minister of Assam (2001-2016) Tarun Gogoi, who passed away on November 23, 2020, told this correspondent from Guwahati over the phone that she could not come to vote because she was “feeling a bit sick”.

Of course, she was missing her husband as well.

The second and third phases of the Assam Assembly election will be held on April 1 and April 6.

Also read: Assam Assembly election: 72.10% voter turnout in first phase till 6 pm

Usually wearing a pair of white mekhela-sador, a smiling Dolly Gogoi could always be seen standing silently by the side of her husband’s towering personality.

“Gaurav (Gogoi) went in the morning but I could not go because of a pain in my leg,” she said.

Kaliabar MP Gaurav Gogoi, son of Tarun Gogoi and Dolly Gogoi, came alone, cast his vote at 9 am  and then went on to address poll campaigns in Karbi Anglong and elsewhere.

On his young shoulders has now fallen the mantle of leading the Congress as one of the important figures of the party in the state and talking up from where his father left off.

Also read: Phase 1 of Assam Assembly elections: 60.55 percent voter turnout till 3pm

The polling station located in Jorhat Municipal Ward No. 10 at DCB College Road missed former Assam CM, Tarun Gogoi this time.

“I always saw him at the polling station, wearing a pristine white dhoti-kurta and accompanied by Dolly baideo and son Gaurav on either side in the first hour of polling. He was also sometimes accompanied by five times MP of Jorhat, Bijoy Krishna Handique. This polling booth has now been shorn of these two political heavyweights,” former ward commissioner Jayanta Baruah said.

Baruah further said Gaurav Gogoi and Tarun Gogoi’s brother former MP Dipjyoti Gogoi had voted on Saturday but Dolly baideo could not come because of a leg pain.

Congress leader Gaurav Gogoi, speaking to the media, appealed to the people to come out in large numbers and vote.

“It is up to the homemakers to come out and vote against price rise, the elders to keep alive the flame of unity as propagated by Mahatma Gandhi and the youth should come out and fight to save the state like Lachit Barphukan, Birsa Munda, Bir Chila Rai and Subhash Chandra Bose,” he said.

Smita Bhattacharyya

Smita Bhattacharyya is Northeast Now Correspondent in Jorhat. She can be reached at: triptyaddy@gmail.com