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Assam police under scanner
Correspondent: Guwahati, 06 Jul 2008
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Published on 7 Jul. 2008 12:28 AM IST
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Assam Police has once again hit the headlines for alleged embezzlement of funds to the tune of several crores of rupees meant for the rehabilitation of surrendered militants.
Surprisingly, the charges of embezzlement of funds, which also indicted some local politicians, have come from none other than Assam Home Department.
A top official of the Home Department on condition of anonymity disclosed that alleged funds meant for rehabilitation of surrendered militants of Bengali Tigers Force (BTF), were being siphoned off by some high-ranking police officials in connivance with some politicians.
Even chief minister Tarun Gogoi was aware of the embezzlement of funds, the official claimed.
According to sources, on August 15, 2006, the chief minister had during a surrender ceremony of 325 BTF militants, made an announcement that the BTF cadres would be offered a one-time grant of Rs.3 lakh each in line with “Kashmir Package” and another Rs.2,000 on monthly basis till completion of the process of rehabilitation.
However, it was alleged that though the State government had so far spent Rs. 6,24,00,000 for the purpose, most of the militants were yet to get their dues.
The surrendered militants were often made to sign some documents at the headquarters of Special Branch, Assam Police, with regard to the monthly allowance, but they never receive the money.
The source in Home Department alleged under the one-time grant, state government had released rupees 4,87,50,000 in 2007 as first installment but the amount did not reach most of the 325 surrendered cadres. Only a handful of the cadres, who held top posts in the outfit, were reported to have received some amount.
Around 300 surrendered cadres of BTF have now warned of taking up arms and going back to jungle if government failed to fulfill its end of the bargain.
They are also planning to petition the Prime Minister and the Union Home Minister in this regard.
Meanwhile, Assam Police has rubbished the allegation of embezzlement of funds. IGP (Special Branch), Khagen Sarmah, claimed most of the surrendered cadres had received their share. “Most of them (BTF cadres) have received whatever amount government has released so far. The shares of some others have been deposited in the bank,” Sharma said.

 
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