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Assam MP petitions Centre as 78-year-old Governor ventures out in lockdown

Assam governor had visited Kokrajhar, the power centre of the autonomous Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC), days after he had “assumed to himself the administration” of the BTC.

Published: 19th May 2020 07:24 PM  |   Last Updated: 19th May 2020 07:30 PM   |  A+A-

Assam governor Prof Jagdish Mukhi (far right) at a meeting in Kokrajhar (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

GUWAHATI: Bodoland People’s Front (BPF) MP, Biswajit Daimary, on Tuesday petitioned Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla, to examine if the 78-year-old Assam Governor Prof Jagdish Mukhi had violated the COVID-19 protocols by visiting Kokrajhar, 205 km away from Guwahati.

Mukhi visited the western Assam town, the power centre of the autonomous Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC), days after he had “assumed to himself the administration” of the BTC. The Governor’s rule was imposed in the four districts of Bodoland Territorial Areas District, which the BTC administers, last month as the Council’s term expired without an election being held due to COVID-19 pandemic.

“I think there is confusion in Assam on the lockdown guidelines issued by the MHA for which some questions are arising. In the guidelines, there is a clause that says in all zones, persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women and children below 10 years, shall stay at home except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes,” Daimary wrote in a letter to the Home Secretary.

Pointing out that Mukhi is aged above 65 years as per his bio-data, the MP asked whether or not the Governor’s venturing out was a violation of the MHA guidelines on COVID-19 lockdown.

According to Daimary, the Governor had met 29 people from political and social organisations besides different committees. It is difficult to maintain social distancing or follow the MHA guidelines in such a gathering, he wrote.

“The person concerned or authority of the Government of Assam who is responsible to execute the guidelines of the MHA may not be clearly understanding the contains of the guidelines concerning age factor and maintenance of social distancing…The movement of His Excellency, Governor of Assam, and his meeting 29 people within an hour is a danger during this situation,” the MP further wrote.

Meanwhile, at Kokrajhar, Mukhi asked the officers to “keep the BTC administration on its toes” and follow all advisories of the health department. He also asked them to strictly adhere to all safety guidelines issued by the government on COVID-19.

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