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Ceasefire to be discussed in next Centre-ULFA talks
November 02, 2005 20:30 IST
The issue of ceasefire between the outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom and the government would come up at the next meeting of the Centre and the ULFA-selected Peoples' Consultative Group, chief coordinator of talks, Indira Goswami said on Wednesday.
"This issue will be raised in the next meeting, definitely. The modalities and guidelines of the ceasefire have to be chalked out," Goswami told reporters. "I am not competent enough to comment. But I am going through the whole thing very carefully. I may request both sides for a ceasefire."
When asked whether the talks would be successful, Jnanpith awardee Goswami said, "My part was to make them sit for talks. It is difficult for me to predict the outcome of the discussions". It depends on the PCG as they are the like-minded people chosen by the ULFA. The path is not that smooth."
About local media reports on the next round of PCG- government talks in Guwahati on November 22, during the prime minister's visit, she said, "There was no such talk about the second round being held here."
Regarding the encounters between security forces and insurgents in Assam, the Delhi University professor asserted, "Encounter deaths have become monsters. People should be given accounts of the killings. I had great regard for the army but, in Assam, the army has killed people."
Goswami said she had not yet talked to the Centre about the encounters, though she had sent messages to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi to stop army operations against ULFA.
Regarding the Dhemaji blast on the previous Independence Day, where more than 10 children were killed, she said, ULFA 'commander-in-chief' Paresh Barua had denied his outfit's involvement and, instead, mentioned some names which she could not disclose.
"But I will put this question to the ULFA leadership when I meet them in person," the writer said. Asked if she was able to influence Barua to change his stand on 'sovereignty for Assam', she said, 'there is a mutual understanding'.