[Assam] Human rights violation by Indian Army in the North East India
Pradip Kumar Datta
pradip200 at yahoo.com
Tue May 8 23:48:28 PDT 2007
Human rights violation by Indian Army in the North East India
Army bid to stop mutiny backfires
OUR CORRESPONDENT Dibrugarh, May 8: After the slur of murder in the guise of an encounter killing, the army today stood accused of employing Hitlerian methods to muffle a Kakopathar-like mutiny over Budheswar Morans death.
Villagers headed for Uchamati, the site of yesterdays blockade on NH 37, were intercepted at various places in Tinsukia district since morning and allegedly warned of dire consequences if they joined the agitation. No vehicle carrying protesters from far-flung villages to Doomdooma town could cross the pickets put up by army and paramilitary personnel.
The attempt to nip the agitation in the bud, however, seemed to boomerang on the army as the day progressed. Instead of focusing on NH 37 alone, protesters gathered on NH 52 near Kakopathar to block traffic. The army is doing everything illegally. It first kills an innocent person and then behaves in a Hitlerian manner to crush a democratic protest. This is injustice. We have heard that the Prime Minister is in Guwahati; will he do justice? asked Rakesh Moran of Kakopathar, the origin of the massive uprising that followed farmer Ajit Mahantas extra-judicial killing last year.
Residents of Kakopathar blocked NH 52 near a forest department checkpoint and NH 37 in front of Tipuk tea estate after they were stopped from joining protesters in Doomdooma. Nearly 250 people assembled at Kakopathar, while four times that number blocked the highway at Tipuk.
The army stuck to its claim that Budheswar was an Ulfa militant and not a temporary worker at a tea garden near his native village, Bishnupur.
The slain youths family, friends and villagers of Bishnupur again refused to accept his body, which is in a Tinsukia morgue. They also rejected the magisterial inquiry ordered by chief minister Tarun Gogoi as an eyewash.
Hemanta Narzary, commissioner of Upper Assam, has been asked to conduct the inquiry.
The so-called inquiry ordered by the chief minister is nothing but a tactic to end the agitation. Let the chief minister first announce the outcomes of the several inquiries into the death of Ajit Mahanta and the subsequent police firing. The armys court martial resulted in minor punishment to the personnel involved in that killing. Therefore, Gogoi, as a responsible politician, should refrain from trying to fool the people time and again, said Surajit Moran, joint secretary of the Tinsukia district unit of the Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad.
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