|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
'Stripping of Adivasi woman was isolated incident'
K Anurag in Guwahati | November 27, 2007 17:38 IST
Reacting to reports in both print and electronic media about the stripping of an Adivasi woman on the streets of Guwahati during unprecedented violence last Saturday, the Assam government on Tuesday said that it was an isolated incident committed by some miscreants and shouldn't be projected as a common happening in the state.
"Assamese society holds women in very high esteem. It was an isolated incident of stripping by three miscreants who have already been booked. There was no other similar incident in the recorded history of Assam. The media should also highlight that the incident has been widely condemned by all sections in Assam and that the woman was also bailed out by some sensible persons on the street," Assam government spokesman Dr Himanta Bishwa Sharma said.
He further said that there was not a single people's group in Assam which was opposed to the Adivasis' demand for Scheduled Tribe status.
"Three all-party delegations from Assam House have so far submitted memoranda to the Union Home Ministry in support of ST status for Adivasis who have been living in Assam for two centuries now. The Assam government has already given in to the demand. Nobody should try to give an impression that the Assamese are against Adivasis," the spokesman said.
He further informed, "There are 67 injured Adivasis in Guwahati Medical College Hospital and 30 in Mohendra Mohan Choudhury Civil Hospital. All of them are ready to be discharged except one who has suffered serious head injury."
The state government has announced Rs 3 lakh compensation to the next of kin of the person who perished in Saturday's violence.
The Adivasi woman who was stripped will be given Rs 1 lakh as compensation and a job in the government.
The Assam government has appointed a one-man judicial inquiry commission to be headed by Justice (Retired) Manisana Singh to probe into Saturday's violence to fix responsibility as well as find out involvement of any third force, if any, in instigating the violence.
Meanwhile, the Greater Guwahati Cable Operations Association has decided to black out two private nationwide news channels for telecasting a 'distorted' story about the mob violence and the isolated stripping incident.
A spokesman of the cable operators association said that local viewers had asked for blackout of the two news channels complaining that they had been telecasting 'one sided' story about the violence and stripping incident without taking any comment from the locals in Beltola area in Guwahat where the violence erupted on the streets.