Ranjan Gogoi as CM face? Assam BJP rejects Congress claim

The Assam unit of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has rubbished veteran Congress leader Tarun Gogoi’s claim that the former Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi could be the BJP’s chief ministerial candidate for next year’s assembly polls.

“People utter lot of meaningless stuff, when they grow very old, and we would like to put Gogoi’s statement in that category. I have met many former CMs, but no one makes such baseless assertions such as Tarun Gogoi. There is not one iota of truth in what he had said,” Assam BJP president Ranjeet Kumar Dass told HT.

On Saturday, Tarun Gogoi (85), who was Assam CM from 2001 to 2016, told mediapersons in Guwahati that the former CJI, who took oath as a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha (RS) in March, could be the BJP’s CM face in the assembly polls. “I have heard from my sources that Ranjan Gogoi’s name is in the list of BJP’s probable CM candidates. I suspect he might be projected as the CM by the party in the next assembly polls,” Tarun Gogoi said.

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“The BJP is happy with Ranjan Gogoi for the Ram Mandir verdict and, as a result, he was nominated as a RS MP after his retirement as the CJI. (Ranjan) Gogoi could have refused to be a RS MP, but his acceptance shows he is interested in active politics,” he added.

Ranjan Gogoi was the CJI when the Supreme Court, last November, awarded the disputed land in Ayodhya to Hindu parties, clearing the decks for a Ram Temple there and settling a 135-year-old legal dispute.

Tarun Gogoi, who represents the Titabar seat in Assam assembly, said that he would contest next year’s elections, but would not be the Congress’s prospective CM candidate.

On Saturday, the Congress and the All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) came together to form an alliance against the ruling BJP for the 2021 polls. “There’s nothing to comment on Tarun Gogoi’s utterances. He seems to know more about our party than those who are in it,” said Rupam Goswami, chief spokesperson, BJP’s Assam unit.

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