Guwahati, 13 May-2013,Naresh Mitra: In yet another blow to the Tarun Gogoi government, cabinet minister Siddique Ahmed on Monday alleged that violence in Bodoland Territorial Areas District (BTAD) occurred because strong action had not been taken against the perpetrators in 2008 and 2012 genocides.
Mass grave at Balapara prepared for the victims of BTAD Genocide. #Assam #ArrestPromilaBrahma: Image by AmanWadud
“Had proper action been taken against those who perpetrated violence in Udalguri district of BTAD in 2008, killings would not have rocked the area in 2012 and 2014. The repetition of violence in BTAD is a result of the guilty not being punished,” Ahmed told reporters here.
“My ministerial post is not more important than delivering justice to the people who lost everything in the violence. I spoke the truth about the involvement of former BLT cadres. I am ready to resign from the ministry for the sake of justice,” Ahmed said.
Two weeks ago, Ahmed had remarked that former cadres of the disbanded Bodo Liberation Tigers (BLT) were involved in the carnage. He had claimed that residents of the violence-hit villages had told him about this.
Ahmed had blamed Bodoland People’s Front (BPF), which administers the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) and partners Congress in the state government, for the latest spate of violence. The minister had sought the arrest of former minister and BPF leader Pramila Rani Brahma, accusing her of making “provocative” statements.
Ahmed’s comments came as an embarrassment for the Gogoi government. The CM retaliated by saying Congress would severe ties with BPF only after a probe indicted the party.
However, Ahmed’s latest statement is likely to cause more embarrassment for the CM at a time when dissident activities against him have kept him occupied.
On Monday, Ahmed, who currently holds the border areas development portfolio, offered to resign from his ministerial post as an expression of solidarity with the people who were killed and affected by the recent spell of violence in BTAD, Assam.