Leader of Opposition in the Assam Legislative Assembly Debabrata Saikia on Saturday condemned the Centre’s move to downgrade the security cover of former chief minister Tarun Gogoi from Z-plus to Z category.
In a letter to Union home minister Amit Shah, Saikia said earlier Gogoi’s National Security Guard security cover was reduced to Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) security cover. “Prior to that, the security cover of our former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson and All India Congress Committee president Sonia Gandhi, MP Rahul Gandhi and AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi was reduced from special protection group protectee category to Z-plus category under the CRPF,” he added.
He said it must be borne in mind that after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi, the SPG Act was modified and security cover was provided to families of former Prime Ministers in view of threat perception to their lives. “However, this vindictive government has chosen to withdraw the security cover of people who criticise the BJP for its various unconstitutional and unlawful acts. Last month, the security cover of another former Assam chief minister, Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, was scaled down from Z-plus with SPG to Z-plus with the CRPF,” he alleged.
Saikia said Gogoi had led Assam during crucial periods, was instrumental in restoring peace in the state and had taken it along the path of progress through sheer determination.
“Gogoi is being targeted by the government because of his active anti-CAA role in the recent months,” he alleged.
He urged the Centre to reconsider its decision and restore Gogoi’s Z-plus security cover.