File photo: Assam Legislative Assembly

With five newly-elected MLAs taking oath as legislators on November 11, the ruling BJP-led alliance’s strength rose to 78 in the 126-member Assam assembly.

Of these, the BJP has 62 MLAs, the Asom Gana Parishad nine, while seven members belong to the United People’s Party Liberal (UPPL).

The BJP is still two members short from securing absolute majority of 64 in the House.

Assam assembly speaker Biswajit Daimary on November 11 administered oath to three BJP MLAs – Phanidhar Talukdar, Rupjyoti Kurmi and Sushanta Borgohain – along with two members of the UPPL – Jiron Basumatary and Jolen Daimary.

Elected in the October 30 byelections, the BJP members took oath in Assamese, while the UPPL MLAs did so in Bodo language.

Turncoats Talukdar, Kurmi and Borgohain were elected from Bhabanipur, Mariani and Thowra assembly seats, respectively, while UPPL’s Basumatary and Daimary won from Gossaigaon and Tamulpur, respectively.

Talukdar was earlier elected on an All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) ticket, while Kurmi and Borgohain had won as Congress candidates in the assembly elections held in March-April this year before jumping ship to the BJP.

The strength of the main opposition Congress has now reduced to 27 from 29, the AIUDF now has 15 members as against 16, the Bodoland Peoples Front (BPF) has three against four, while the CPI-M has one MLA.

One seat is held by independent member Akhil Gogoi (belonging to Raijor Dal), while one seat is lying vacant after former chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal got elected to the Rajya Sabha and resigned from the Majuli seat.

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