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State asks Centre to revise rebel rehab plan
Published on 26 Jun. 2011 12:02 AM IST
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Assam has asked New Delhi to revise the surrender-cum-rehabilitation package for militants in the state and the entire northeastern region to motivate more rebels to shun the gun and join the mainstream.
According to security sources, a modified package with more frills is expected ahead of the formal talks between the government and the Ulfa’s pro-talks faction led by outfit chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa.
“ Chief minister Tarun Gogoi has written to the centre for a revised rehabilitation package. He argued that a more attractive package would wean more disgruntled cadres off the path of violence,” a source said.
The current rehabilitation package, offered by the Union home ministry, is in effect since 2005. Besides providing financial packages to surrendered militants, the objective of the rehab plan is to ensure that the reformed rebels do not return to militancy. The Gogoi government feels that the state’s rapid economic progress is a result of militancy taking a backseat.
According to The Times of India, the scheme is applicable to militants who surrender with at least one weapon. The benefits of the package, however, will not be given to a rebel who has laid down his or her arms, returned to the path of violence and and surrendered again.
As part of the package, surrendered militants get business or vocational training and are paid a monthly stipend of `2,000 for 36 months.
On completion of training, a reformed militant gets an immediate grant of `1.5 lakh as fixed deposit for a period of three years.
The existing plan ensured that minor crime cases against “successfully rehabilitated rebels” be withdrawn. However, those who have committed “heinous crimes” such as murder, rape, abduction have to go through the legal process.
The sources said the modified package, as sought by the state government, might not see any change in the provisions related to dealing with cases against the surrendered militants.
At present, the government provides cash incentives for every weapon deposited by a rebel at the time of surrender. For every AK-series rifle laid down, a rebel gets `15,000, while the amount is `25,000 in case of a universal machine gun or a sniper rifle.
During surrender, a militant gets `3,000 for a deposited pistol, `1,000 for a rocket, `500 for a grenade, `3 for every round of any kind of arms, `1,000 for a kg of explosive and `10,000 for a satellite phone.

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