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Brindabon retains AGP presidentship

Guwahati: Brindabon Goswami on Friday retains hot seat of Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) at the end of “shameful” and acrimonious hustings full of clash and controversy.

Speaking to Assam Ttimes, senior party leaders here say the former education minister and MLA from Tezpur emerged consensus candidate on Friday afternoon in the three day long conclave which began on Wednesday to conclude on Friday.

“We have been trying to avoid an election and we have to suffer a lot on Thursday night in the election process as the sitting president Goswami and his one time close aide Phanibhushan Chaudhory vied for the hot seat. Ultimately, we had to hammer out a solution to end this impasse,” they say.

“The meeting unanimously elected Goswami’s rival Chaudhory as the executive president which is widely appreciated in the party,” they inform.

The party leaders on Friday wee hours mired in clash at the ITA, Machkhowa while the party took up the process to elect a new chief. With both the sitting president and the former minister Chaudhury came out to the fray a section of supporters from both the candidates started protesting each other with heat.

During altercation, even some leaders went a step further and vandalized the poll files and broke the furnisher and window panes of the ITA much the disappointment of some dignified leaders.

The brainstorming session ended in the wee hours without electing a new president not to speak of strengthening the party and the much touted reunification with the AGP(progressive) led by former Chief Minister and founder president Prafulla Kumar Mahanta.

Veterans like Dr Arun Sarma and Sarbananda Sonowal’s bid to quell the situation proved failure forcing the party’s poll panel to stop the process. But some leaders here say both these veterans made their desperate bid to stop the poll process to enable Goswami to continue the office.

The party reconvened its meeting at 11-30 in the morning and a proposal was moved to announce Goswami as the consensus candidate for the presidentship and his rival Chaudhory as executive presidentship. The move was simply accepted in the meeting.

Disclosing his readiness to seek reelection, Goswami says recently, “I left no stone unturned to revive the party. We do have a strong regional party if do ignore the conspiracy of a section of my partymen to malign my image.”

He says, “I still enjoy support from several district bodies and a good number of central committee leaders who want my re-election. I am ready to prove my strength”.

Goswami is backed by Ramendra Narayan Kalita, Joseph Toppo, Dilip Kumar Saikia, Hitendra Nath Goswami, Apurba Kumar Bhattacharjee, Jatin Mali, Nurul Hussain, Atul Bora (junior), Hiranya Konwar, Arup Kumar Phukan and others.

Similarly, Phani Bhushan Choudhury is banking on support from Banendra Mushahary, Bhupen Roy, Keshab Mahanta, Chandra Mohan Patowary, Robin Banikya, Padma Hazarika, Birendra Prasad Baishya, Dr Kamala Kalita, Gunindra Das, Manoranjan Das, Sushila Hazarika, Pradip Hazarika.

The party’s executive body, which ended at the dead of the night, failed to elect a consensus candidate for the hot seat. Also it failed to draw up strategies to regain its strength.

Brindaban Goswami’s term comes to an end on August 31.More than 500 delegates from across the state attended the the meeting.
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