The Kaliabor Lok Sabha Constituency in Assam has always been an impregnable Congress fortress with the AGP winning only twice.
Bhadreswar Tanti penetrated the Congress fortress in the year 1985 when AGP made its entry into the political arena. Tanti won riding the AGP ‘popularity tsunami’ in 1985. The Congress was once again made to bite dust in this constituency in the year 1996 when Keshab Mahanta of AGP came up trumps beating the former chief minister of Assam, Tarun Gogoi.
Barring 1985 and 1996, the Congress has been on a roll in this constituency all these years. Tarun Gogoi has won thrice from this constituency in 1991, 1998 and 1999.
For the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls to be held in three phases in Assam on April 11, 18 and 23 next, the battle royale in Kaliabor is between Gaurav Gogoi of Congress and AGP candidate Moni Madhab Mahanta. The BJP has left the Kaliabor seat for its ally AGP as part of a pre-poll alliance.
In the impending Lok Sabha elections, it is to be seen whether Gaurav Gogoi of Congress can do a 2014 encore. BJP and its ally AGP is working overtime for this seat with BJP heavyweights health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and Ranjit Dass (Assam BJP president) going to the hustings and putting their weight behind AGP candidate Moni Madhab Mahanta.
Moni Madhab is the younger brother of AGP working president and water resources minister Keshab Mahanta. Kaliabor parliamentary constituency is one among the 14 Lok Sabha constituencies in Assam and it comprises 10 Assembly segments – Golaghat, Dergaon (SC), Bokakhat, Dhing, Batadroba, Rupohihat, Samaguri, Kaliabor, Sarupathar and Khumtai.
The first MP from Kaliabor was Bedabrata Barua of the Congress in the year 1967. Since then, the electorate of this constituency has almost never let down the grand old party of India.
In the last Lok Sabha elections held in 2014, the Congress continued its winning streak with Gaurav Gogoi getting 443,315 votes and Mrinal Kumar Saikia of BJP garnering 349,441 votes. Bijoy Kumar Tiru of AIUDF settled for the third spot with 231,295 votes.
In the 2014 elections, Tarun Gogoi’s son Gaurav Gogoi defeated BJP’s Mrinal Saikia by a sizeable margin of 93,874 votes. The voters will exercise their franchise in this constituency in the first phase on April 11 next.
Kaliabor constituency: At a glance
Constituency number: 11
Total electors: 14, 57,865 (2014 estimates)
Male electors: 7, 52,785
Female electors: 7, 05,080