The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Mohilary security drama ruffles govt

Guwahati/Kokrajhar, April 3: Bodo leader Hagrama Mohilary’s decision to opt out of “Z” security cover in protest against an alleged nexus between police and the militant National Democratic Front of Boroland has got the coalition government very worried.

A hassled Dispur set in motion a damage-control exercise today even as Mohilary, who heads the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) and the parent faction of the Bodoland People’s Progressive Front, left Kokrajhar for New Delhi.

It was also a day when the rift in the BPPF (H), a part of the ruling coalition, became more pronounced. Mohilary asked BTC executive member D. Basumatary to officiate as the council’s chief in his absence, overlooking his official deputy, Kampha Borgoyari.

In Guwahati, director-general of police R.N. Mathur referred the issue of Mohilary’s “security” to the home depar-tment. Chief minister Tarun Gogoi, who returned from New Delhi today, was briefed by his office about the development.

The inspector-general of police for the Bodoland districts, R.M. Singh, was cautious in his reaction to Mohilary’s decision. “We have no say in the security arrangements for VIPs. It is the government’s decision. As of now, the security retinue assigned to Mohilary is still there,” he said.

On the BTC chief’s allegation that the four Bodoland districts were becoming the playground of NDFB militants, Singh said security had been “tightened” in all “sensitive” areas.

The BPPF (H) has 11 legislators, three of whom are ministers in the Gogoi government.

Mohilary’s outburst against the police came after gunmen shot dead the personal security officer of BTC member Rabindra Bala Biswas at Kumarikhata market in Baksa district on Saturday.

Although Dispur seems to be shaken, sources in the BTC said the drama over Mohilary’s tirade could soon be shadowed by the rift in the BPPF (H) ranks. Many are pointing to the “elevation” of Basumatary at the cost of Borgoyari as proof that all’s not well in the powerful party.

A Mohilary aide, however, cautioned against jumping to conclusions. “One should not read between the lines. Borgoyary was out of station till Monday,” he said.

The BTC deputy chief was unavailable for comment.

On whether Mohilary’s allegation about a police-NDFB nexus was a ploy to divert attention from the turmoil in his party, a source said: “Even if it is only a diversionary tactic of the BPPF to divert attention from the rift in the party, Dispur will not take any chances either politically or on the law and order front.”

Mohilary’s visit to New Delhi is apparently an unofficial one.

The Bodo leader said yesterday that he would be on holiday outside the state for a week.

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