GUWAHATI: Condemning the killing of five people in Tinsukia district on Thursday, former State Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has squarely blamed it on the State government for not acting timely on those making provocative statements in the recent past.
Talking to the media at Rajiv Bhawan in Guwahati on Friday, Gogoi said: “Pro-talk ULFA leaders Mrinal Hazarika and Jiten Dutta have been arrested, but not BJP MLA Shiladitya Deb. Why? The MLA has been making provocative statements right from the beginning. All should exercise restraint now.”
Gogoi said: “Everybody has the right to oppose the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, but nobody has the right to kill people. We’re against foreigners, not against Bengalis. The onus on protecting Indian citizens lies with the government. However, the government has failed on this front.”
Taking a dig at Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Gogoi said: “The Chief Minister left for Chennai aboard a chartered flight to open the Assam Bhawan on Thursday. He, however, couldn’t make time to visit Tinsukia today. Law and order is the Home Minister’s responsibility, and the portfolio is held by the Chief Minister himself. It’s failure on the part of the Chief Minister. We want CBI inquiry into the killing.”
On Sonowal’s pledge of bridging the Brahmaputra-Barak gap, the former Chief Minister said: “Contrast to such a promise, the gap between the two valleys of the State is rather widening under this government.”
Later in the day, the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee took out a protest march in Guwahati against the killing and Dispur’s failure on law-and-order front.