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Assam govt merges 4 districts

Biswanath district will merge with Sonitpur, Hojai with Nagaon, Bajali with Barpeta and Tamulpur with Baksa following the Cabinet's decision.

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New Delhi: The BJP-led government in Assam on Saturday merged four districts with existing ones and decided to redraw boundaries in 14 places, this comes a day ahead of the Election Commission’s (EC) deadline for the delimitation exercise for Assembly and Parliamentary constituencies.

The decision was taken during the state Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma at the Assam House here.

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Biswanath district will merge with Sonitpur, Hojai with Nagaon, Bajali with Barpeta and Tamulpur with Baksa following the Cabinet’s decision.

The number of districts in Assam will now come down from 35 to 31.

Talking to reporters, Sarma said the decision to merge some districts had to be taken due to administrative convenience and in public interest despite him not being very happy with them.

“I am not very happy with the decisions taken today, but sometimes some measures have to be adopted keeping in mind the greater interest of the people, due to administrative exigencies and for betterment of Assam,” Sarma quipped. 

He said, “This is a transitional phase and we will revive the four districts in course of time.”

Meanwhile, the judicial, police and administrative offices in the four districts will keep functioning normally, Sarma said, adding that a senior officer in the rank of ADC would look after the administrative work following the merger. 

On December 27, the poll panel announced fresh delimitation exercise of 126 Assembly and 14 Parliamentary seats and imposed a ban on creation of new administrative units with effect from January 1.

The CM said that there would be jurisdictional change of districts in 14 areas for administrative convenience such as Kamrup to Kamrup(M), Kamrup(M) to Morigaon, Hailakandi to Cachar, Karimganj to Cachar, Morigaon to Nagaon, Cachar to Karimganj, Barpeta to Bongaigaon, Barpeta to Nalbari, Darrang to Udalguri, Jorhat to Golaghat and Tinsukia to Dibrugarh. 

“My Cabinet colleagues will visit these areas and discuss the matters with stakeholders to apprise them as to why we had taken the decisions for the overall good of the State. I hope the people will understand the situation and cooperate with us,” Sarma said.

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