Despite reluctance of Assam Chief Minister, Tarun Gogoi to go for inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in Rupees one thousand crore scam of North Cachar Hills development fund, as demanded by the Opposition parties of the state, he had to bow down and decided to go for the same after getting advice from the Union Home Ministry. According to the news item published by The Week, the National Investigation Agency (NIA), had earlier suggested that since there were the evidences of nexus between the militants, politicians and government officials, the government should go for the probe by the CBI, but the chief minister did not agree to the suggestion. He repeatedly denied involvement of his ministers and tried to divert attention of the people asking probe into the earlier cases of decade ago during Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) regime. But he failed to convince the Union home ministry saying that his ministers’ name did not appear or mentioned in the NIA report submitted to the government.
On the state government’s decision to go for CBI inquiry into the financial irregularities, the Assam health minister and spokesperson Himanta Biswa Sarma said that the government was ready for a CBI inquiry, as it had nothing to hide and wanted the truth to prevail, but the chief minister wanted that the CBI probe to be preceded by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report, which would have the CBI inquiry as well. On the alleged involvement of seven ministers, including himself in the scam, he said that the NIA had clarified on The Week’s news story, ruling out involvement of any minister. He further added that the NIA has rebutted The Week report saying that the ‘ministers were not even investigated by it (NIA) and hence there was no question of naming any’.
The Week story on the issue has at one place mentioned that after finding the involvement of ministers in the scam, the NIA sought permission from the state government to examine such persons, which was denied. Under such circumstances the NIA could not proceed ahead and suggested the government to go for a CBI inquiry. Under such circumstances it was out of question for the NIA to name any person without questioning. Hence the report could not mention any name. It is just like a theft case in which a thief is not apprehended with booty, it does not mean that there was neither a theft nor a thief. The Week’s story does not seem to be so weak if thoroughly gone through it. There is something to put more embarrassment to the state government and the politicians.