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CM rues graft control failure

- Gogoi questions KMSS funds source

Guwahati, Nov. 10: Chief minister Tarun Gogoi today admitted that his government had failed to root out corruption in the state despite being in power for three consecutive terms.

He, however, questioned the source of funds of those leading the anti-corruption movement in Assam, including Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), as well as in the rest of the country.

“As the chief minister of the state for more than a decade, I admit my failure to totally do away with corruption in government departments. I also accept that in some departments, files do not move without exchange of money,” Gogoi told reporters here.

“But it is also a fact that the level of corruption has gone down during my government’s tenure, though it needs to go down further. I want to ask those leading the anti-corruption movement, as they can manage funds to ferry a large number of people, organise big rallies and tour the country, what is their source of money?”

He also questioned KMSS leader Akhil Gogoi how could farmers come to the city at frequent intervals to join rallies if their economic condition was so pathetic.

Gogoi said the government had taken several steps, including e-governance, decentralisation of power and creating awareness among the people to bring corruption down to zero.

He said once the e-governance project was complete, government officials and employees would not be able to keep files pending and the scope of taking bribe to move files would be very remote.

He said the government was also planning to introduce the rural administrative service to create a pool of officials to serve the village people with honesty and dedication.

Welcoming criticism against the white paper on the foreigners problem, he said the government would incorporate the facts and figures which were missed out. He said his government would update the NRC 1951 within the next three years, complete the AADHAAR scheme, a unique identification project, seal the border and strengthen the foreigners tribunals.

“The government has been able to rehabilitate more than 4 lakh people rendered homeless in the violence that broke out in lower Assam in July. Less than 40,000 victims have to be rehabilitated now,” Gogoi said.

The chief minister added that despite floods, the state would be able to produce surplus rice this year because of good weather since September.