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Centre out to deceive Assam; Sonowal in conspiracy against State: KMSS

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, January 4: Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS) president Akhil Gogoi said today that the Union Power Ministry was out to deceive the people of Assam yet again on the issue of Lower Subansiri Hydroelectric Project. The ministry, he said, hatched a conspiracy to deceive Assam and Union Minister of State for Sports and Youth Affairs (Independent) Sarbanda Sonowal was involved in hatching the plot.

Talking to newsmen in the city today, the KMSS president said that the record note of the December 10–11, 2014 meeting between the Union ministry, various organizations of Assam and experts on the dam in New Delhi had statements that had never been said by any of the organizations from Assam. Some important points, on the other hand, he said, have not been included in the record note.

“After reading the note of records of the meeting, one will certainly get an impression that the organizations of Assam that took part in the meeting gave their go–ahead sigl to the Centre on the Lower Subansiri Hydroelectric Project,” Akhil Gogoi said, and added: “The KMSS did register its protests to certain decisions taken at the meeting, and there was an assurance from the ministry that those protests would be included in the note of records as ‘notes of dissent’. The note of records of the meeting circulated among the stakeholders by the Union ministry, however, made no accommodation of those points. This has made it clear that the ministry is out to deceive the people of Assam yet again.”

The farmers’ leader further said: “Some points like (i) the role of expert group and civil society activists of Assam should be acknowledged for their contribution in improvement of the project design, (ii) reduction of dam height for reducing inundation in case of dam break, etc., (iii) adequate provision for flood moderation and (iv) Assam’s share of 533 MW to be confirmed were never said by any of the organizations that had taken part in the meeting.”

Akhil Gogoi was surprised to see the note on the much–talked about eight–member (four each from the state and the Centre) Project Oversight Committee (POC) in the note of records circulated by the Union ministry. The note, according to Akhil Gogoi, reads: “The POC would hold its meeting as soon as possible to address the issues and consider early resumption of the work on the project”.       

“This note sounds that as though the decision to go ahead with the project has already been taken and the POC will just address issues to consider early resumption of project works. This is a conspiracy in which Union Minister of State for Sports and Youth Affairs Sarbanda Sonowal is involved since he was also present at the meeting,” the KMSS leader said.

Akhil Gogoi appealed to various organizations of the state to make their respective stands clear on the Lower Subansiri Project.

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Ankur Kalita

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