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Plea for NIA probe into ministers’ role

Guwahati, May 11: The Bodo Sahitya Sabha today demanded three cabinet ministers of Assam be brought under the NIA probe while the investigating agency inquires into the recent killings in the Bodoland Territorial Areas District (BTAD).

The Sabha said to know the truth about the killings in the BTAD, the NIA should probe education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, forest minister Rakibul Hussain and border areas development minister Siddique Ahmed for allegedly making inciting and controversial comments on the situation in the BTAD.

Sabha’s general secretary Kamala Kanta Muchahary told the media here today that there had already been demands that BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary, deputy chief Kampa Borgoyary, minister Chandan Brahma, MLA Pramila Rani Brahma and Rajya Sabha member Biswajit Daimary be brought under the NIA investigation.

“Probing only the Bodo leaders will not reveal the truth. For it, Sarma, Hussain and Ahmed should also be brought under NIA’s probe,” Muchahary said. He added former MLA Abdul Khaleque, Lok Sabha member Badruddin Ajmal and leaders of the All Assam Muslim Students’ Union, All Bodoland Minority Students’ Union, Muslim Students’ Union of Assam and the Oboro Surakshya Samiti should also be probed.

The Sabha welcomed the state government’s decision to hand over the responsibility of investigating the killings in the BTAD to the NIA, but demanded that the CBI should also be given responsibility to probe the incident.

It opposed the demand for dissolution of the Bodoland Territorial Council by several organisations saying that those who have raised the demand are not investigating agencies and their demand is one-sided.

“There has been a conspiracy to dissolve the BTC. We oppose any demand of dissolution of the council. Such demands are an attempt to create misunderstanding between different communities in the BTAD,” Muchahary said.

The Sabha also opposed Dispur’s reported move to provide arms to villagers as self-protection measures. Chief minister Tarun Gagoi, however, denied any such move by the state government. “When there are demands to seize all illegal arms in the state, the decision of giving arms to villagers is nothing but suicidal,” Muchahary said.

Muchahary said illegal arms are found not only in the BTAD but across the state.

“Illegal arms will be there in Assam till there are militant groups like Ulfa, NDFB, KLO and other outfits. Various Bodo organisations have been demanding seizure of illegal arms for long. As part of it, efforts are on to bring all factions of the NDFB to negotiation table,” he said.

The Sabha appealed to the police and the NIA not to harass innocent Bodos in the name of seizing illegal arms.

The Sabha called governor J.B. Patnaik’s reported assurance to a minority community and non-Bodo organisations to hold panchayat elections in the BTAD as “unconstitutional” and violation of the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.

Arms recovered

Police intercepted a car at Chapaguri in Chirang district and recovered a M-16 rifle with silencer, a 303 rifle and 140 rounds of ammunition today. Police said the arms were being brought from Dimapur for NDFB-S cadres. One person has been apprehended.


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