Saturday, May 18, 2013
Last Updated: 18 May 07:21 AM IST
20 November 2012
The latest comments of BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary about the arrest of Mr Mano Kumar Brahma, BTC executive member and BPF member speak volumes. He had said the arrest of Mr Brahma under the suspicions of him being involved in the ongoing violence in west Assam is a political conspiracy against his party
statesman news service
GUWAHATI, 20 NOV: It has not come to a parting of the ways yet, but the rift between the ruling Congress and its ally, the Bodoland People’s Front (BPF), is widening.
This is obvious if one goes by the statements made by the leaders of both the parties on various recent occasions soon after the arrest of an executive member of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) and the subsequent withdrawal of personal security officers posted for the security of many BTC executive members and other VIPs there.
The latest comments of BTC chief Hagrama Mohilary about the arrest of Mr Mano Kumar Brahma, BTC executive member and BPF member speak volumes. Mr Mohilary had, yesterday, said the arrest of Mr Brahma under the suspicions of him being involved in the ongoing violence in west Assam is a political conspiracy against his party.
Mr Mohilary, who used to lead an armed militant outfit (the now disbanded Bodoland Liberation Tiger Force) before holding negotiations with the government, also argued that some Congress leaders had hatched conspiracies against both the BTC and the BPF.
The young Bodo leader primarily targeted Mr Bhupen Bora, the State Parliamentary secretary in charge of home, as the conspirator in the arrest of Mr E M Brahma.
Mr Mohilary added that for any reason, if the Congress wants to part with the BPF, "they can do it anytime".
The BPF is an ally to the Tarun Gogoi-led Congress government in Dispur and their relationship continues to remain sour, amidst the violence between the indigenous Bodo people and Muslim settlers in the Bodoland Territorial Autonomous Districts (BTAD) that has snatched away the lives of over 100 people and rendered four lakh people homeless. Even now, more than 30,000 people from both the communities remain to stay in relief camps, who had to leave their villages after July-August violence.
Meanwhile, Mr Mano Kumar Brahma's wife sought the judiciary's intervention against the state police, alleging that his husband has been trapped in a conspiracy. Mrs Renu Prabha Brahma, while filing a case at the Kokrajhar chief judicial magistrate’s office said the recovery of two AK-47 rifles, two magazines with 60 rounds of live ammunition from their residence at Tengapara in Kokrajhar on 17 November was staged by police.
Though the BTC rules the BTAD, it has no authority over police and the administration. The district magistrate and district police chiefs follow the orders from the state home minister, currently being looked after by Chief Minister Gogoi himself.
Following the first round of violence in the BTAD and its adjacent areas, a BPF legislator (Mr Pradeep Brahma), who represents Kokrajhar (West) Legislative Assembly was arrested in August on the charges of rioting and other criminal conspiracies.
Lately, an umbrella body of various Bodo peoples’ organisations has come out in favour of BTC authority and alleged that the Congress government at Dispur was "creating a war-like situation in BTAD areas". Addressing the media in Guwahati recently, the Coordination Committee of Bodo National Organisations blamed the state government for its insincere approach to the Bodo communities.
KK Mooshahary, the head of the coordination committee also said the state government was not in favour of peace returning to the BTAD, rather the Congress party was more interested in forcefully rehabilitating the illegal refugees in the localities belonged to the tribal people.
On the other hand, Mr Bora, made it clear that the government would continue its search for illegal arms in BTAD areas. Alleging that Mr Mohilary was trying to divert the issue, Mr Bora said the BPF president had lost his political clouts on the BTC and hence, he was making such immature statements.
The Congress is in a comfortable situation as it has 78 legislators in the 126-member Assam Legislative Assembly, where the BPF has only 11 MLAs.
Keeping an eye on the forthcoming Panchayat elections in Assam, scheduled for early 2013, Mr Gogoi said the Congress-BPF alliance is still intact. He, however, added that "it is up to the BPF leadership to decide whether to stay with us or not".