[Assam] Another Clueless Editorial

mc mahant mikemahant at hotmail.com
Thu May 24 06:29:43 PDT 2007

But that is Assam Tribunese.!
Left>Right<Left^upV down.
That is their thinking Process! What is their Bottom line?
Like Kalam's.
Like Regime's.
 Very Like Soon-to-be-Superpower's.
Murdering the thought process and the English

Date: Thu, 24 May 2007 07:58:44 -0500To: assam at assamnet.orgFrom: cmahanta at charter.netSubject: [Assam] Another Clueless Editorial

Happened to run into the following 'editorial' piece from the AT. Rarely do you see so much written to demonstrate one's clueless-ness.

The editorial describes the futility of the government's policies and actions, spanning nearly two decades and ends up recommending what? More of the same.

The insanity rules!


(Emphasis mine)

Counter-insurgency operations in Assam- R Dutta ChoudhuryFull-scale counter-insurgency operations for nearly two decades totally failed to solve the problem of militancy, which has been affecting Assam since the formation of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) in 1979 and it has proved beyond doubt that Army operations can only help in bringing down the level of violence. Of course, over the last few years, a number of militant outfits have arrived at cease-fire agreements with the Government for solving their problems through political dialogues, which is of course, a positive sign. But at the same time, new militant outfits are cropping up in different parts of Assam, while, reports of attempts by the fundamentalist elements inimical to India to establish their roots in the State added a new dimension to the problem of insurgency.In fact, over the years, Assam has been caught in the web of a vicious cycle and the only way out to break the cycle is to find an amicable political solution to the problem of insurgency. It is a fact that despite best efforts by successive Governments, potential investors are shying away from Assam because of the law and order situation and the State remained backward because of lack of adequate private investments. Announcement of special industrial policies by the Government of India with lucrative incentives and holding of investors' meets by the Government of Assam in the metropolitan cities of the country failed to attract investment to the State to the desired extent and though, at one point of time, a number of potential investors started making queries in Dispur about investment potential, most of them retracted their steps after a series of acts of violence, which rocked the State in the early part of this year.The failure to attract private investment to the desired extent can be considered as one of the prime reasons for underdevelopment of the State, while, the problem of unemployment has assumed alarming proportion, which helped the militant groups to lure away unemployed and frustrated youths to their folds. It is a fact that the Government cannot solve the problem of unemployment by providing jobs in Government Departments, but steps should be taken to evolve policies to provide self-employment avenues to the unemployed youths to check the youths from joining the militant groups out of frustration.
Full scale counter insurgency operations against the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) was launched in the later part of 1990 and though a good number of militants were killed or arrested in the operations, the militant groups remains a potent force. Over the years, the ULFA received severe setbacks in the operations by the Armed forces and the operations by the Bhutan Army in 2003 against the militants taking shelter in that country was one of the worst setbacks suffered by the ULFA in recent years as the headquarters of the outfit were smashed leading to arrests of several prominent militant leaders. However, the top leaders of the ULFA are taking shelter in foreign countries and the growing problem of unemployment provides the outfit with a steady stream of youths willing to join them. Years of counter-insurgency operations proved that the only way out to solve the problem is to tackle the root causes of the problem, but so far efforts to bring the ULFA to the negotiation table for political talks failed to yield the desired results.The people of Assam saw a ray of hope when the ULFA formed the people's consultative group (PCG) in 2005 to hold initial parleys with the Government of India to pave the way for direct talks and the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh proved the sincerity of the Government of India by attending the first meeting with the PCG. But the ULFA leaders struck to their stand that the sovereignty of Assam must be the core issue for talks and demanded that five jailed central committee members of the ULFA should be released before talks. On its part, the Government maintained that the sovereignty of Assam would not be negotiable. The Government also said that the ULFA must give a written assurance to come for talks to ensure the release of the jailed central committee members. With both sides sticking to their stands on the issue of talks, the peace process ended in a deadlock and there is no prospect of direct talks between the Government and the ULFA in near future.
In the meantime, the ULFA resorted to acts of violence in different parts of the State and of late, the ULFA changed its tactics and started planting explosives in busy places. The militant outfit also launched a brutal attack on innocent Hindi speaking people in the remote areas of Assam, particularly in the Upper Assam districts of Tinsukia and Dibrugarh in the early part of this year killing more than 70 persons. On the other hand, the ULFA also suffered severe setbacks as a number of hardcore cadres have either been killed or arrested in recent times. However, it is evident that such killings and counter-killings will not help in any way in dealing with the problem of insurgency and the Government must initiate steps to tackle the root cause of the problem. The Government can also launch mass mobilization campaign to make the people of Assam aware of the bad effects of insurgency on the overall development of the State. Of course, from time to time, the Government holds anti-violence rallies, but so far, no sustained effort is seen on the part of the Government in this regard.
Another disturbing fact is that innocent persons are being harassed or killed in the counter-insurgency operations in the State and such unfortunate incidents alienated the common people of Assam. The recent killing of Buddheswar Moran in Doom Dooma by the Army in a case of mistaken identity led to widespread protests and though the Army apologised to the people and the Government ordered a probe into the unfortunate incident, it failed to pacify the people of that area who knew that Moran was not a member of the ULFA. This was not the first incident of killing of an innocent person during the operations against the ULFA as last year, ten persons were killed in firing by the police and security forces in Kakopathar in Tinsukia district when they were protesting against the killing of an innocent person by the Army. In an exchange of fire between the militants and security personnel, the possibility of innocents being hit by bullets in cross firing cannot be ruled out, but the security forces must try their best to ensure that no innocent is unduly harassed in the operations. As language barrier often creates confusion and leads to unsavoury incidents, the Government must ensure that the Army personnel are accompanied by local police personnel during the operations. It should not be a difficult task to do so as the Army now operates under a Unified Command Structure headed by the Chief Minister himself. The Government can also think of offering a crash course on local customs to the personnel of the security forces brought in from other parts of the country before they are inducted into counter-insurgency operations in Assam.
The idiot box is no longer passe!
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