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Gogoi denies charges of paying to ULFA
Published on 1 May. 2009 12:27 AM IST
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Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi on Thursday issued a written statement, denying the charges that the state government had paid money to the proscribed ULFA to ensure peaceful hosting of the 33rd National Games two years back. “There was a demand for money by the ULFA but it was not entertained,” the chief minister said. According to UNI report, earlier, just a day before the first phase polling in the state on April 23, former secretary of the Assam Olympic Association (AOA) Mukut Medhi alleged that the state government had paid Rs 1.5 crore to keep the ULFA silent during the period of holding of the National Games, which was denied by the government. Now, a week after the election, the chief minister issued a fresh statement admitting that he was ‘’briefed about the demand for protection money from the ULFA, but no money changed hands.’’ In February 2007, Assam organised a very successful 33rd National Games and took pride in showcasing the state as more than 20,000 athletes and officials descended from every corner of the country. But the ULFA triggered a blast just four days before the opening ceremony, threatening to jeopardise the games. Consequently, as teams started arriving, prominent sports personalities of Assam appealed to ULFA to shun violence and that was followed up by an Assembly resolution moved by all political parties on similar line. The ULFA responded, assuring of no attack, and the National Games was a huge success and made a history.

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