GUWAHATI: Arrested Assam RTI activist Akhil Gogoi on Thursday said the Centre had insulted the people of Assam by not receiving the report of the high-level committee on the implementation of Clause 6 of the Assam Accord.
“The government has insulted the Assamese people by not receiving the report. We want them to implement the suggestions made through the report in letter and spirit,” Gogoi, who is in judicial custody following his arrest for alleged linkage with CPI (Maoist), told journalists while being taken to a hospital for a health checkup.
He said the Assamese people would need much more than what the committee suggested, as reported by the media, to get constitutional safeguards.
By setting a deadline, the Centre had earlier goaded the committee to submit its report. And when the report was finalised on February 10, the government refused to receive it and advised the committee to submit it to the Assam Chief Secretary.
Lurinjyoti Gogoi, who is the general secretary of All Assam Students’ Union and a member of the committee, told New Indian Express that Union Home Minister Amit Shah was supposed to receive the report.
“The chairman of the committee (retired Gauhati High Court judge Biplab Kumar Sarma) had sent an email to MHA official Satyendra Garg seeking details on when and to whom the report was to be submitted. Garg had told the chairman that the report would be received in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and others after February 18. Later, he advised the committee to submit it to the Assam Chief Secretary,” Gogoi said.
According to media reports, the report has been submitted to the Chief Secretary. However, the office of the Chief Secretary denied having received it.
“We don’t know why the government refused to receive the report. It should have received it and implemented the suggestions. The government had said earlier that the suggestions of the committee would be implemented a week after receipt of the report,” Gogoi recalled.
He added that the Centre was upset over the leakage of the report. The committee, constituted by the Centre, had apparently suggested that 1951 be made the base year for defining the indigenous people of Assam, introduction of Inner Line Permit (ILP) in Assam to restrict the movement of “outsiders” to the state and reservation of Assembly as well as Lok Sabha seats for indigenous people.