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Home > News > Report

ULFA camps in neighbourhood major hurdle: Gogoi

K Anurag in Guwahati | March 27, 2007 17:51 IST

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Tuesday stated that it will be hard to root out the problem of ULFA insurgency in the state as long as the militant group continued to have camps in Bangladesh and Myanmar.

He said the United Liberation Front of Assam had survived despite constant pressure from the security forces in the state because of their shelters in neighbouring Bangladesh and Myanmar.

"The state government has information that the Centre is in touch with the Myanmar government regarding the militants' camps in that country, but Bangladesh government has been steadfastly refusing presence of Northeast militants' camps in that country," Gogoi said.

According to the chief minister, there must be talks with the ULFA at some point of time for a permanent solution to the problem.

"I still hope that talks with the ULFA would materialize. It may be delayed, but it has to happen as the ultimate solution could be found only through dialogue," he said.

The state government is not receptive what was mooted by the just concluded two-day public conclave on the ULFA problem organised here by People's Committee for Peace in Assam.

Two basic suggestions came out of the conclave.  One was holding of talks on the issue of restoration of sovereignty of Assam, the core demand of the ULFA and other was holding plebiscite on key ULFA demands.

In reference to advocacy for dialogue on 'restoration of Assam's sovereignty,' Gogoi said there was no point holding talks on an issue that the Centre could not concede. Secondly, he said that plebiscite was not necessary given that people of the state had been participating in elections held under Indian Constitution spontaneously.

Gogoi also refuted the allegation levelled by Bharatiya Janata Party president Rajnath Singh about the Congress government being soft towards handling insurgency and terror in the state.

"We are not soft to anybody. We have been dealing with the situation firmly but at the same time we are keeping the option open for holding dialogue with insurgents for finding a permanent solution to the problem," he said.