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Akon Bora land in deep trouble

In a major set back to the Tarun Gogoi government, the Guwahati High Court has ordered repoll in two booths of the Assembly constituency from where Social Welfare Minister Akon Bora had won as a Congress candidate in the 2006 polls.

The historic judgment came up when Justice I. A. Ansari was hearing a writ petition filed by former Asom Gana Parishad minister Atul Bora, directed election officials to hold repoll at the earliest for the two polling stations - No 196 and 164 of the 52 Dispur Assembly constituency.

The AGP candidate, who had contested against the minister, had lost the polls by a mere 813 votes.

Bora had filed a petition with the High Court alleging election malpractices by the concerned authorities in the two polling stations.

The social welfare minister had polled 52,461 votes while the AGP candidate polled 51,648 votes.

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Assam has a new hero

29 May 2009 - 11:24pm | Aiyushman Dutta

Assam has got a new hero. And a true hero he is at that. In the violence-hit district of Karbi Anglong where the youths are angry and frustrated at being targeted by both the underground elements for fresh recruits and the security forces harassing them on suspicion of harbouring the boys in the bush, they have now found a new youth icon in the form of Kiri - the boy from Diphu who was the only entrant from the entire Northeast into the popular television reality show ‘MTV Roadies’ and who subsequently made it to the finals.

Your average boy next door, Kiri - who is a science graduate and an activist with the “Karbi Human Rights Watch” (KHRW) - has become an unlikely hero among the Karbi youths. Not just because he had participated in the highly popular television reality show, but because of his in-born attitude, charisma and honesty which manages to bowl over everyone at first sight. So the last couple of months, while the entry country was feeling the heat generated by the 15th parliamentary elections, the people of Northeast India, especially those in Karbi Anglong and other parts of Asom, had a new pastime – watch MTV to cheer for their new youth icon!

A shy person, Longkiri Timung, or Kiri as he is popularly known, likes to maintain low profile and let his actions speak more than his words. Or that was the case until MTV Roadies happened, that is. His entry into the highly popular Roadies show has had thousands of Karbi youths fired up, who now look up to him as their spokesman.

What endeared Kiri to thousands of people in his home district were just a couple of sentences he had spoken about his district when the twin baldies were grilling him. He had spoken about the popular autonomous State demand in his district and about his participation in rallies in support of their constitutional demand. At a time when the people of the entire region are lambasting their representatives for failing to highlight their problems in the right places, the young brigade of Karbi Anglong have now found an unlikely hero in Kiri. Not surprisingly, the local media of Karbi Anglong chose to make full use of the opportunity. A prominent newspaper of Karbi Anglong had featured him prominently in its front-page, displaying his portfolio alongside that of Biren Singh Ingti, the four-times Lok Sabha MP from the lone reserved ST constituency of Karbi Anglong and NC Hills, who is blamed for having failed to take up any of the problems and issues of the people of his constituency at the national level.

Kiri, who managed to push through the grueling tests in Roadies to finally bow out in the finals, has now become a celebrity with a tremendous fan following. He is recognized in public places, in bus stops and train stops, with youths pestering him for his autograph. But for someone who likes to maintain low profile, the sudden twist in fate does get dramatic at times. An unknown Longkiri, who is now back home in Diphu, is still running from pillar to post making arrangements for his mother’s treatment. His father, a terminal cancer patient who was suffering for a long time, had expired just a month back, while the Roadies show was still being aired on television. Having had to grapple with his father’s demise when he was still basking in the glory of his triumph in Roadies, Kiri, like a dutiful son, is now attending to his mother, whose health is deteriorating with each passing day. He is just back from Vellore where he had taken his mother for another round of treatment, which, like the previous times, failed to yield any results.

The last time I had gone to Diphu, Kiri had come to drop me at the station, dodging the countless people who, after recognizing that it was their own ‘Roadie boy’, kept pestering him for his autograph. But Kiri’s is well-grounded for he is well aware of the fact that like beyond the reality show is much tougher. He is happy with himself and takes pride in whatever little he could do for his land and his people. Karbi Anglong and Asom have truly got a new hero in their midst!

Huge fund missing on Bharalu river

19 Aug 2014 - 4:18pm | AT News

 A slew of projects over the Bharalu river implemented to help Guwahati get rid of massive water logging has failed to pay any dividend during the last five years. But the amount spent in the name of a single river is astronomical.

The huge fund to the crore of rupees was implemented from 2009-10 to 2013-14. But the premier north eastern city still grapples with massive waterlogging even after heavy downpour. Then where the money have gone? The answer is down the drain.

According to information available with Assam Times, in 2009-10, Rs 50 lakh was spent in the name of an estimate for excavation of earth from evicted areas and desiltation to increase carrying capacity of the Bharalu and Mora Bharalu.

In the same year, another fund of Rs 17.53 lakh was utilized in the name of operation and maintenance of pumping station at Bharaumukh Sluice gate for dewatering of Guwahati storm water.

In 2010-11, the water resources development department spent Rs 21.70 lakh to remove silt of the river by excavation with machineries.

This was followed by the operation and maintenance of pumping station at Bharalumukh apart from installation of electric powerlines to submersible pump. The expenditure was Rs 16 lakh.

In 2011- 12, another huge amount of Rs 98.50 lakh was spent to desilt and clean the river by excavation. In the same year, Rs 18.10 lakh was spent to maintain pumping station in Bharalumukh for dewatering storm waters.

Not only that. The water resources development department spent another huge fund of Rs 65.12 lakh again for desiltation and cleaning of the same river in 2012-13. This was followed by the maintenance of the same pumping station with a Rs 22.54 lakh fund.

In 2013-14, the river was excavated wit machineries to maintain proper installation and gradation of sluices. The expenditure was Rs 71.20 lakh.   

This was followed by the expenditure of Rs 25.05 lakh for operation and maintenance of the pumping station in 2013-14. These are apart from renovation of the sluice gate with Rs 5.84 lakh.

But the people the city and its people have not get even an iota of respite from rainwaters that continue to wreak havoc at regular intervals. Will the authorities look into it? 



Hopingson's support keeps growing: Kamjong villagers commit to backing NPF ticket aspirant

23 Oct 2016 - 10:26pm | Lester Makang

For quite sometime, those who back Hopingson A Shimray and the NPF ticket aspirant himself have been claiming that the number of his supporters in the Phungyar assembly constituency has continued to grow over the last few months. As reported earlier, till the middle of October, a whooping 2200 supporters from the constituency have newly enrolled themselves as primary members in the Naga People's Front (NPF) to support Shimray in the ensuing Manipur legislative assembly elections.

And while Shimray arduously propels the 'new-vision-for-the-people' mantra, it seems to make sense to assume that 'grassroots campaigning' to genuinely feel the pulses and concerns of the electorates has been paramount to the current growth of his support.

The former Indian Railways officer, who hails from Marou village under 43-Phungyar constituency in Ukhrul, has repeatedly stated that he has been able to understand the needs of the villagers and enlighten them on the need for securing their lives on political, economic and social fronts.

In a new development touted as an outcome of his ongoing tour -- which has covered 87 villages so far -- across the constituency, a group of like-minded youngsters of 24 villages under Kamjong subdivision voluntarily initiated a youth interaction cum enrollment drive for the NPF in support of Hopingson Shimray at Kamjong headquarters on Friday last.

"About 100 people including 85 youth from 24 villages under Kamjong subdivision drawn from different political affiliations participated in the interaction and pledged their support for Hopingson Shimray through a consensual resolution," event convenor Ningkhan Zimik told reporters during a news conference held at UDWJA office on Saturday.

According to Zimik, out of around 100 participants who received enrollment forms, 42 were confirmed as primary members of NPF on that day itself, while the rest are expected to submit the documents in a few day's time.

The participants have fully subscribed to the ideas and vision of Hopingson Shimray for the development of Phungyar constituency and other hill districts of Manipur, Zimik said quoting the resolution adopted in the meet.

He also said that the people have now realized the relevancy of NPF to the politics of Naga people in view of the ongoing peace process.

Continuing that NPF is also the only party that is pursuing effective implementation of the Article 371(C) for the tribals of Manipur, Zimik said as citizens of Manipur, they believe in the principles of mutual respect among the different communities in the interest of peace and unity.

To support Hopingson Shimray, each of us has taken the first step by enrolling ourselves as primary members of NPF, said a supporter Khangampam Eshidang.

"So, we are committed to work for the success of Hopingson Shimray in the forthcoming elections under any circumstances," said Eshidang.

Meanwhile, vice president 43- Phungyar area NPF unit B Chithung has, on behalf of the party, expressed pleasure in the enrollment of 42 new members in the party and extended wishes to Hopingson Shimray for success in the ensuing polls.