The dark clouds of uncertainty over the BTC polls, which were indefinitely postponed due to the COVID19 pandemic, continue to hover around as the polls are unlikely to be held anytime soon.

The Assam health department has dashed off a letter to the Assam State Election Commission to consider postponement of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) polls owing to the spike in the Covid19 cases.

Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday said, “The health department has urged the state election commission to defer the BTC polls due to the surge of Covid19 cases in the state.”

“We have written to the election commission as well as the chief secretary to consider postponing the BTC elections and withdraw the model code of conduct,” he added.

The health minister observed that if the council polls are held in such a condition, it would impact not only on the health situation of the people living in the four districts under Bodoland Territorial Area Council (BTAD), but it would also affect the people in the adjoining districts.

“If the situation deteriorates further due to any large congregation during the elections, the health department would not be able to handle the situation,” Sarma said.

Election to the 40 constituencies of the council, scheduled for April 4, could not be conducted in the wake of the lockdown imposed to contain the COVID19 outbreak.

Assam Governor Jagdish Mukhi assumed the charge of the administration of the Bodoland Territorial Council after its term expired.

Pertinently, Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) with its 12 MLAs is in alliance with BJP in Dispur and is in power ever since the formation of BTC in 2003.

BPF romped back to power in BTC council in 2015 for the third tenure winning 20 out of 40 seats in the council while BJP opened their account in the council with just one seat.

Pertinently, in the 46-member council, 40 members are elected and 6 are nominated by the Governor from non-represented communities.

Shajid Khan

Shajid Khan is Northeast Now Correspondent in Udalguri. He can be reached at: itsshajidkhan@gmail.com