The Assam government has decided to hand over all cases related to the ethnic violence -- that recently rocked Kokrajhar, Chirang and Dhubri districts of Assam -- to the Central Bureau of Investigation to nab the culprits who masterminded the violence.
Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said, "We have decided to hand over all the cases related to violence, including those in Bodoland Territorial Council and parts of Dhubri district outside the BTC, to the CBI. I have already signed the official documents for this purpose."
"In fact, we took the decision on the first day when the violence broke out, but the then Home Minister P Chidambaram had reservations over engaging the CBI in such cases. But we want a CBI probe as we suspect there are many forces involved in the violence. We want exemplary punishment for conspirators and perpetrators so that it becomes a lesson for the future," Gogoi said.
Expressing grave concern over the killing of three people at Ranighuli on the border of Kokrajhar and Dhubri districts on Monday night, Gogoi said the police and security forces have been ordered to confiscate all illegal arms in the violence-hit areas to prevent such incidents.
With the killings in Ranighuli and the recovery of another body in Kokrajhar on Tuesday morning, the toll in the current spell of violence in the state has gone up to 73, including four people who were shot dead by the police while controlling mob frenzy.
Gogoi said so far, 170 people have been arrested for the violence and orders have been issued to make preventive arrests of anti-social elements.
Meanwhile, the number of relief camps has come down to 245 from 340, with over 1.16 lakh violence-hit people returning to their respective villages within the last few days.
The government has set up 95 fixed pickets of paramilitary force personnel in vulnerable villages to provide round-the-clock security to people returning from relief camps.
Nearly 3,64,083 people are still living in relief camps. The CM has ordered the chief secretary to take steps to decongest the relief camps to prevent the outbreak of any epidemic. Fifteen people, including seven children, have died in relief camps.