Guwahati: Rain god may play a spoilsport as Assam would go for phase-I of the Assam assembly elections 2021 starting on Saturday morning. Polling will begin at 7 am at 1, 1537 polling stations in the first phase.
According to India meteorological department (IMD) scientist Sanjay Shaw, isolated to scattered rainfall activity is likely to be witnessed in certain pockets in the Upper Assam region where the first phase of polls would be held.
However, the IMD predicted a sunny day in the majority of areas of the state.
On Saturday, 47 assembly constituencies across 12 districts in Assam will go to the polls. A total of 81, 09,815 general electors were enrolled for the first phase. Out of whom, 40, 77,210 were males, 40, 32,481 were females and 124 were transgender.
In the first phase of state polls, fates of heavyweight BJP candidates like chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal (Majuli), Assam Assembly Speaker Hitendra Nath Goswami (Jorhat), ministers Ranjit Dutta (Behali), Naba Kumar Doley (Jonai) and Sanjoy Kishan (Tinsukia) would be sealed.
Similarly, the future of NDA ally Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) ministers- Atul Bora from Bokakhat and Keshab Mahanta from Kaliabor- would also be sealed during the first phase of polling.
From Congress also, its top leaders like Ripun Bora would also try his luck from Gohpur seat, where his wife Monika Bora lost in the 2016 polls.
Congress Legislature Party leader Debabrata Saikia (Nazira), AICC Secretary Bhupen Borah (Bihpuria) and former ministers Bharat Narah (Naoboicha), Pranatee Phukan (Naharkatiya) and Rakibul Hussain from Samaguri were also in the first phase fray.
Congress has fielded Bhaskarjyoti Baruah in party stronghold Titabar, a seat held by former chief minister Tarun Gogoi till his death in November last year.
On the other hand, anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) leaders like Lurinjyoti Gogoi, president of newly-floated regional political party Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) and peasant leader Akhil Gogoi would also wrestle their luck in the first phase. While Lurinjyoti Gogoi was fighting from two seats- Duliajan and Naharkatia, Akhil Gogoi has contested from Sibsagar. Akhil Gogoi was arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) in 2019 amidst anti CAA movement and contesting in the poll from the jail.
As many as 264 candidates from various political parties were in the fray.
In 2016, the BJP and its ally AGP had swept the elections in the region by winning 35 of these seats. The BJP alone had bagged 27 seats. Congress could manage to win only nine seats.
The Election Commission of India (ECI) has already made it mandatory to wear masks for the voters. Separate arrangements like waiting areas were also set up to maintain social distancing at polling stations.