GUWAHATI, Dec 27 – “Right from rebuilding a shattered Congress party in Assam after the Assam agitation to dealing with the insurgency-induced tough times in the State, the Chief Minister for two consecutive terms Tarun Gogoi is a person the Congress has banked on during crisis.” Parliamentarian and an old acquaintance of Gogoi, Mani Shankar Aiyar gave a candid account of the time spent with the State Chief Minister while releasing Tarun Gogoi: The Inside Story of a Blunt Politician, an authorised biography, jointly with litterateur Dr Mamoni Raisom Goswami at Rabindra Bhaban here today.
“With no generic claim to politics, Gogoi started his political career from the grassroots and as an exception to many other politicians who enter politics through agitation, he opted for social service,” Aiyar said.
“Another quality of the man is that he does not hanker after power or never sought any political post or position,” he said.
The book written by journalist Wasbir Hussain is published by Wordweaves India Publishers.
Speaking on the occasion, Hussain said that the sub-title of the book suits correctly to the politician as he is blunt to the extent of being politically incorrect.
“The book throws a lot of insight into the man and the landmark events in his contemporary times. The impact of Mahatma Gandhi’s Salt Satyagraha in Assam, influence of Jawaharlal Nehru on young Tarun Gogoi and his forays into active politics in 1962,” he said.
The book also talks about Indira Gandhi spotting and picking up Tarun Gogoi, his rise in the Congress party, his association with Rajiv Gandhi and his installation as the Pradesh Congress president in Assam at a time the party was negotiating a very critical phase in the State.
Speaking of some of her ideological differences with the political leader, and some other very humane qualities of Tarun Gogoi, Dr Mamoni Raisom Goswami said that he is a politician who never used to keep any personal grudge against his opponents.
On the occasion of the release of a biography of his own, Gogoi said that the main emphasis of his government was on uplifting the living conditions of the poor and the deprived, and on making food, healthcare and education accessible to all.
On insurgency, Gogoi said that all the separatist groups have come for peaceful talks with the government. “I have also got feelers that the anti-talk Ranjan Daimary group also wants to sit for talks,” he said. Also mentioning the illegal influx in the State, he assured that Assam would never be allowed to become a part of greater Bangladesh, as propagated by many of his opponents.