NEW DELHI, Aug 23 – The political drama over State Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma’s resignation may well be over following intervention of the AICC. Sarma is likely to withdraw his resignation and resume his duties on Friday.
The week-long stand-off that has been subject of much speculation in the State might end on Friday when Sarma again takes charge of his Ministry following AICC general secretary in-charge Digvijay Singh’s ‘personal advice’.
The Minister himself, however, denied any knowledge. “I have no instruction from AICC in this regard. TV breaking news is not true. I will go by the decision of the Chief Minister,” the once-trusted aide tweeted.
The AICC general secretary told newsmen here that he had advised Sarma over phone to withdraw his resignation in the larger interest of the government and the party.
Sources said that both Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and PCC president Bhubaneswar Kalita were consulted, as the AICC general secretary mediated to resolve the impasse.
It has been learnt that in a communication Sarma was told that Assam is passing through a difficult phase and the need of the hour was to work unitedly to bring about reconciliation in the State hit by ethnic clashes. It was conveyed that all should work together to improve the situation in the State and restoration of peace, said sources.
According to sources, some of the party bigwigs who were handling the North-east affairs held consultations with the Chief Minister to work out a way to resolve the impasse. It was felt that the reported differences between the Chief Minister and the sulking Health Minister was not helping matters. More so, at a time when back-to-back incidents left the State Government badly shaken.
Among Gogoi’s key troubleshooters Sarma is perceived to be close to the Bodo leadership, a factor which may have prompted AICC to step in.
Himanta’s resignation itself was shrouded in mystery and for several days, both the Chief Minister and Sarma maintained a stoic silence. The Chief Minister had later revealed that he was handling both the ministries Sarma was in charge of.
Meanwhile, Sarma tweeted : “I feel that BTC leadership must discuss rehabilitation of displaced people. Time to cooperate with the State Government to resolve humanitarian crisis.”
“No issue can get priority over humanity. As long as the crisis goes on, it will be difficult to make progress on other issues. It is time for reconciliation,” he said.