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NGO challenges forest minister

Carcass of a  rhino at Bahubil Camp, Kaziranga on January 11

Durniti Birodhi Manab Adhikar Suraksha Mancha (DBMASM), an NGO has challenged Assam forest minister, Rockybul Hussain, for his misleading and indecent behavior against Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS) leader, Akhil Gogoi as shown on a local leading TV channel recently. The Manch president, Pradip Baruah, has alleged in an open letter addressed to the forest minister on his claim as ‘absurd’ that he has proved hundred percent successful forest minister. Baruah has ridiculed the minister’s claim and asked him to prove his success in saving the rhinos or in getting them killed? He has drawn his attention on the regular media reports of killing rhinos in the state.

The Manch president reminded the minister that the Union government’s Wildlife Protection Act 1972, was duly amended in 2009 and afterwards through review the Criminal Procedure immunity of arms use by forest guards was enforced.  Since the year 2010 till now rhinos killing has not stopped. Even during the first two weeks of the current year 2015, four rhinos have been killed. The forest minister has claimed that he is a successful people’s representative that’s why people have voted him to power. Reminding about the election politics, the Manch chief has given the instances of most respected and humble people’s representatives like Late Sarat Chandra Singh and Dr Bhupen Hazarika, who were also defeated in the political game. Therefore, he has cautioned the minister that ‘policy of violence’ cannot go longer. The people in present days are conscious and not supposed to bow down before violent acts, he hinted.

Mentioning another issue of illegal sand digging as alleged by KMSS leader, Akhil Gogoi that through syndicate hundreds of truckloads of sand are allowed to pass paying Rs.200/- per truck from Chhaygaon Kukurmara area. The minister had asked the KMSS leader to move the issue to court, if he has any proof. Shifting his own duty to the others itself is a proof in itself that the minister is involved in such a deal, the letter reflects. The Manch president has further mentioned that his organization on November 12, 2014 had sent a memorandum to the forest minister through DFO, East Kamrup about the sand lifting from Chandrapur area following which a few TV channels also covered the story, but no action was taken even after the issue was raised before SSP, Guwahati and Chandrapur PS.  Photographs of loaded trucks with sand were also shown to concerned authorities but of no result. Baruah has advised the forest minister through his letter to do something for the betterment of the people before it is too late and the Assembly election days are not far away.

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Daya Nath Singh's picture

Journalist; Guwahati Press Club office Secretary

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