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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Assam: AIUDF’s only Hindu MLA Phanidhar Talukdar resigns, set to join BJP

Talukdar, who is a first-time MLA with the AIUDF, cited 'the larger interest' of his constituency and Assam for the decision.

Written by Tora Agarwala | Guwahati |
Updated: August 31, 2021 10:46:48 pm
Phanidhar Talukdar, Phanidhar Talukdar quits AIUDF, AIUDF HIndu MLA, assam bjp, assam congress, himanta biswa sarma, assam news, indian expressTalukdar’s resignation comes a day after the Congress announced that it would sever ties with its partner, citing AIUDF leadership's “continuous and mysterious praise” for the BJP. (Photo: Phanidhar Talukdar/Facebook)

All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) MLA from Bhabanipur, Phanidhar Talukdar, Tuesday resigned from the party, citing “the larger interest” of the people of his constituency and Assam. Talukdar, who is a first-time MLA with the AIUDF, said he was “all set to join the BJP on September 1.”

“I had no problem with the AIUDF but I am very impressed with the work done by the BJP, especially Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. Therefore, I am sacrificing my seat for the betterment of my constituency,” Talukdar told The Indian Express.

In his resignation letter to the president of the AIUDF, Talukdar said he was stepping down from the post of secretary of the AIUDF legislative unit with immediate effect. “In addition, I am also withdrawing my primary membership of the AIUDF party in the larger interest of the people of my constituency and the people of Assam,” he said in his resignation letter.

Talukdar had joined the AIUDF six months before the Assembly elections in March. Prior to that, he had unsuccessfully contested as an independent candidate from the Bhabanipur constituency in Bajali district in 2011 and 2016. In the 2021 election, he won by about 3,000 votes against NDA ally Asom Gana Parishad candidate Ranjit Deka.

Talukdar’s resignation throws open another constituency for a bypoll — apart from Bhabanipur, bypolls to at least five constituencies (Tamulpur, Gossaigaon in Bodoland, and Mariani, Majuli, Thowra in Upper Assam) are scheduled in the next couple of months.

Talukdar’s resignation comes a day after the Congress announced that it would sever ties with its partner, citing AIUDF leadership’s “continuous and mysterious praise” for the BJP.

Talukdar is the the third MLA to have jumped ship to BJP after Sarma took office as the chief minister in May. Two prominent Congress faces — Mariani MLA Rupjyoti Kurmi and Thowra MLA Sushanta Borgohain — joined the saffron party in June and July respectively.

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