Bharatiya Janata Party General Secretary Ram Madhav on Sunday said that Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma’s burden in the North East region was more than party President Amit Shah’s. Madhav made the statement in response to a question on why Sarma was not given a Lok Sabha seat to contest from, PTI reported.

At a press conference in Guwahati, Madhav was asked why Sarma did not get a ticket while Shah, who is the party in-charge of the entire country, is contesting from Gandhinagar.

“That means Himanta Biswa Sarma’s burden is much more than Amit Shah’s, probably,” said Madhav. “Because he has to handle five-six governments here. He has to handle the entire election campaign in the North East. That needs a lot of energy and time, so the party cannot confine him to one seat. We needed his time and energy for the larger campaign for all candidates in the North East.”

Last week, the BJP said Sarma will concentrate on strengthening the party’s base in the region and hence he will not contest the Lok Sabha elections. Amit Shah had taken to Twitter to explain why Sarma had not been given a seat. Earlier, Sarma has said that he will not contest the Assembly elections in the state in 2021, hinting that he was expecting a national role. However, after the decision, Sarma on Twitter said he accepted the party’s decision “humbly”.

Madhav also said the party may consider sending Sarma to the Rajya Sabha from Assam.

Also read: In Assam, BJP thwarts the political ambitions of its regional point man, Himanta Biswa Sarma