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Assam polls: BJP’s silence on CAA gives Congress, regional outfits room to manoeuvre

In Assam, the citizenship debate is much more complicated given its links to the questions of identity and indigeneity

March 25, 2021 / 05:08 PM IST

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) strategic narrative that CAA is not a poll issue in Assam has been countered by the Congress-led ‘grand alliance’ as well as two newly-floated regional parties. The Congress manifesto unveiled by party leader Rahul Gandhi in Guwahati last week “guarantees” to repeal the controversial citizenship law if it is elected to power.

Needless to say, CAA sparked nationwide protest and large-scale violence in some states. Four people were killed in Assam in police firing during the December 2019 anti-CAA agitation.

However, the key questions remain as to how effective the Congress’s strategy would be and whether the opposition bloc can turn the tide against BJP in this election or not.

Apart from the CAA repeal, the Congress poll manifesto has promised 5 lakh government jobs, financial assistance to women, increased daily wages for tea garden workers, farm loan waiver, free electricity, among others.