GUWAHATI: Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Tuesday said the recent violence in the state was the result of a joint failure on the part of his government and the Centre.
“Yes, it’s a joint failure (of state and Centre),” he told reporters here,even as he said lapses, if any, would be probed.
The CM conceded that his government had received an intelligence report from a state agency at 12 pm followed by an Intelligence Bureau (IB) report at around 3pm on the fateful day. Both the reports had warned the state government of the imminent outbreak of violence.
“The BJP says the Assam government was informed ahead of the attacks but it didn’t act. Aren’t the SSB(Sasathra Seema Bal), the CRPF and several other forces deployed in the state under the direct control of the Central government? So, why didn’t they act if the Centre had also been warned of the attacks?” Gogoi asked.
In this regard, he pointed out that the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief(GOC-in-C) of Army’s 4 Corps, which is based in worst-hit Sonitpur district, is the operational head in counter-insurgency operations.
Gogoi also lashed out at the BJP for demanding the dismissal of his government and advised the party to behave responsibly.“This is not the time to play politics. The BJP is playing politics by putting the blame on the state government. I want to ask them as to why they had leaked the IB report (to the media). By leaking it, they had only exposed their own government.”
“If there were lapses on our part, there were lapses on the BJP’s part as well. So, will they demand the dismissal of their government in Delhi? We won’t allow them to aggravate the situation. They cannot dictate (terms to) us,” Gogoi said.
Further, he alleged that the NDFB (Sangbijit) faction had ‘supported’ the BJP in the last Lok Sabha elections.“Everyone knows this. The whole of Assam knows this. Our candidate (in Tezpur) was their target. The threat forced us to strengthen his security,” Gogoi said.
The calibrated attacks on Tuesday had claimed at least 68 lives, all adivasis, and displaced over 2.11 lakh people. Three other adivasis were killed in police firing while eight Bodos were killed in retaliatory attacks.
People, who fled their homes in the wake of the violence, are now lodged in relief camps in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and West Bengal.