Ahead Of Assam Elections, Tarun Gogoi's Challenge To 'Religious Intolerance'

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Ahead Of Assam Elections, Tarun Gogoi's Challenge To 'Religious Intolerance'

Mr Gogoi also announced the setting up of development councils for several communities in the state.

Guwahati:  In an effort to curb "religious intolerance", Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Thursday announced plans to make common prayer facilities in every district where people from any faith can go and offer prayers.

With elections on the horizon where a 15 years-Congress rule is being challenged by the BJP, party sources said they want to make "communal harmony" their main mantra.

The common prayer facilities will be opened in every district in a phase-wise manner, Mr Gagoi said.

"We have seen religious intolerance growing. There are forces active to destabilize the communal harmony which he very much required for social and economic development," he said.

Mr Gogoi also hinted that there are strong possibilities of a poll alliance with "secular" forces.

"Thus we have decided to open common prayer facilities in every district where anyone from any faith, any religion can go and offer prayers," he said.

The facilities will have a small Naam Ghar (an Assamese prayer place), a Hindu temple, a Buddhist temple or pagoda, Church, Masjid and a Gurudwara, the chief minister said.

Mr Gogoi also announced the setting up of development councils for several communities in the state, including Brahmins, Kalitas, Jolhas and Karbis to ensure their all-round socio-economic development.

"The 2016 Assam elections will be a crucial fight for both Congress and BJP. We agree that there can be anti-incumbency but look at the graph of Assam, there is development all around. BJP has been losing elections after elections in different parts and at different level. Thus for them Assam would be a do or die situation. We are prepared for it" Mr Gogoi told NDTV.

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