Friday, June 18, 2010

Insurgency reduced in Assam; Gogoi quotes figures

New Delhi, Jun 17 (UNI) Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today claimed that insurgency in the state has reduced to a great extent and expressed hope that the decision taken to initiate talks with Ulfa and other insurgency groups will be fruitful.

''Due to development that has taken place in the state, insurgency has reduced vastly. This is because the progress has helped in abating the support bases of the insurgents,'' Mr Gogoi told mediapersons.

Quoting figures, the Chief Minister stated that incidents of extremist-related violence in the state have reduced from 584 in 2009 to 137 till June 15 this year.

''The number of civilians and security force officers killed has also come down from 255 in 2009 to 25 till Tuesday,'' he said.

Detailing about encounters happened in the state, he said they have lessened from 187 in 2009 to 59 till Tuesday while number of extremists killed have reduced from 209 last year to 68 till June 15.

In regards to recoveries made, he said last year, arms and ammunition recovered were above a thousand but this year till now it has been around 200.

Speaking about the talks to be held with the insurgent groups, Mr Gogoi said it was a very good sign that most of them have shown keen interest in holding negotiations with the government.

However, he reiterated that they would not wait for Paresh Barua, Ulfa's commander-in-chief, to start the process. ''We will not wait for Paresh Barua for an indefinite period. If he wants to come, he is invited else we will surely go ahead with the talks,'' Mr Gogoi added.

The decision by the Centre was taken after Mr Gogoi met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on June 15 and Union Home Minister P Chidambaram yesterday.

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