Chief Minister aspirant duo, Sarbananda Sonowal and his challenger Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma left for New Delhi in a chartered flight this morning to report before the BJP’s central parliamentary board at 10:00 hours .
The CPB wants to take the final call on the next Chief Minister of Assam after meeting them personally. The high command has not been able to make up mind. Both are not only qualified and have done exceedingly well in the past five years in the administration as well as election results.
Both left for Delhi in the same aircraft. Notably this is also for the first time they met after their comprehensive win on the Assam Assembly election.
Although the results were declared on May 2 but both had avoided each other, sending enough message that there was no love lost between them.
Both Mr Sonowal and Mr Sarma have been asked to reach Delhi by 10 am on Saturday. BJP sources have added that the party wants to discuss the issue face to face with both the leaders before taking a final call. This is being done to avoid any sort of factionalism in Assam BJP, they said.
Although apparently both of them have restrained themselves from publicly going against each other. But it was apparent from the body language of both that both are serious contender of the Chief Minister giving the CPB one of the biggest headache.
Never before in the history of the BJP, a state had to wait for a week to get a Chief Minister after a thumping win, especially in this covid crisis.
Initially the BJP was blaming the West Bengal violence for the delay but with the every passing day, even that excuse have also become non tenable.
As far as MLAs are concerned, certainly the numbers are in the side with the Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma as approximately two third of the BJP MLAs are with him.
In the CPB also there are divisions. If Amit Shah and BL Santosh are favoring Dr Sarma as the next Chief Minister Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari and Shivraj Chauhan reportedly backing Mr Sonowal. The Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President J P Nadda have remained neutral so far.
It is expected that the name of the Chief Ministers of Assam will be announced by the afternoon so that a low key swearing in ceremony can be organized on Sunday next. The state is bracing for a possible lockdown from Monday after surge of covid cases in the past weeks.