Anti-CAA Activist Akhil Gogoi Becomes First MLA in Assam to Win Election from Jail

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Jailed anti-CAA activist Akhil Gogoi grew to become the primary Assamese to win an election with out hitting the marketing campaign path, as he clinched the Sibsagar constituency, defeating his nearest rival Surabhi Rajkonwari of the BJP by a decisive 11,875 votes. The founding father of the newly floated Raijor Dal — arrested in December 2019 over sedition fees — bagged 57,219 votes as an Independent, garnering assist from 46.06 per cent of the voters.

The Congress, which had initially backed the Raijor Dal chief, ended up giving ticket to Subhramitra Gogoi, who got here third in the competition. The RTI activist, in an try to attain out to the folks of the state, wrote a number of open letters from jail, highlighting issues that want to be addressed.

What might need struck a chord with the voters was his 85-year-old mom’s efforts to marketing campaign for his imprisoned son alongside the slender lanes of Sibsagar, regardless of the frailties of outdated age. Moved by Priyada Gogoi’s dedication, famend social activists Medha Patkar and Sandeep Pandey flew down to the Upper Assam city and joined the octogenarian in her campaigns.

Hundreds of youth volunteers of the Raijor Dal additionally took to door-to-door electioneering to woo voters forward of the three-phase polls. Notwithstanding your complete election equipment of the BJP, which put all its weight behind Rajkonwar as prime leaders similar to Union Minister Smriti Zubin Irani addressed the folks of the constituency, Gogoi, a greenhorn, emerged victorious with completely no money in hand and Rs 60,497 in deposits.

A graduate from Cotton College in Guwahati, the 46- year-old Raijor Dal chief shouldn’t be new to electoral politics. He had served as common secretary of the Cotton College Students’ Union in 1995-96. Over the years, the anti-corruption activist, who additionally helms the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), had been on the forefront of quite a few agitations.

He had fought for land rights of indigenous folks, and led a statewide motion towards development of huge dams in the ecologically delicate areas. Dozens of instances have been slapped on him by successive state governments.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested him in December 2019 for his alleged involvement in the violent anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act protests throughout the state. Political analyst Atiqur Rahman Barbhuiya mentioned Gogoi’s victory will go down in historical past as the one political prisoner to have set such a precedent after former union minister George Fernandes, who received the 1977 Lok Sabha election by over three lakh votes from a jail in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur.

“Gogoi won because he identified with the indigenous sentiments. People considered him as his spokesperson,” Rahman Barbhuiya informed PTI. Prominent members of the Raijor Dal mentioned they’d transfer the court docket, searching for preparations for Gogois participation in the oath-taking ceremony.

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