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Tarun Gogoi may finally be replaced as Assam Chief Minister this week

NEW DELHI: Tarun Gogoi may be ejected as Chief Minister of Assam this week.

The likelihood of his immediate replacement comes in the wake of the report submitted to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi by central observer Mallikarjuna Kharge who went to Guwahati to seek the views of MLAs and MPs last month. Kharge is said to have said that a majority of party MLAs are in favour of a change of guard.

Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who has been leading the dissidence against Gogoi, is likely to be the next chief minister. Sarma was a close confidant of Gogoi before the two fell out some time back.

Gogoi’s exit would mean the first scalp following Congress’s Lok Sabha rout, with the sword also hanging over Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan. Congress was nearly swept out in Assam and Maharashtra contrary to pre-poll expectations that it would post a decent performance. BJP posted its best show ever in both the states.

Sources said the party has taken the decision on Gogoi and the Assam government could see a new leader as early as this week. A senior Assam leader said the state unit was eagerly awaiting the change of guard so that it can begin the repair work on the organizational front.

This is likely to scale up expectations in the Congress over the post-rout overhaul promised by the leadership. The Antony committee is set to submit its report on the reasons of the LS debacle any time now. The informal panel was entrusted the task of documenting the views of state leaders on the reasons of defeat after Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi had held discussions with main players of all states.

The report may also decide on the fate of Maharashtra chief minister. His removal had appeared near certain before it was put on hold by the leadership following discussions with ally NCP. The state government later took critical decisions like giving job quotas to Maratha and Muslim communities, putting a question mark on the removal. Maharashtra goes to polls in October along with Haryana.

Original Post can be found at Times of India: Tarun Gogoi may be ejected as Chief Minister of Assam this week

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