RSS-backed BJP govt arrested me for speaking up for Assamese people: Akhil Gogoi
The KMSS leader accused CM Sarbananda Sonowal and health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma of betraying the Assamese people to appease Bengali Hindu migrants that the RSS wants rehabilitated.Updated: Sep 14, 2017 23:49 IST
Activist Akhil Gogoi, arrested on charges of sedition on Wednesday, said the BJP-led coalition government targeted him for speaking up for the Assamese.
He also warned of an uprising of the indigenous communities as members of his peasants’ body, Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), protested across the state on Thursday demanding his release within 24 hours. On Thursday afternoon, a local court in Dibrugarh gave the police four days’ custody of Gogoi. The police had sought 14 days.
The day saw KMSS members blocking highways for several hours. Many camped outside the central police station.
Dibrugarh deputy commissioner Laya Madduri said a few companies of paramilitary forces has been deployed in the town to maintain peace.
The Dibrugarh police had arrested Gogoi from his residence in Golaghat town, about 180km west, for “hatred-spewing speech” at a public rally on Tuesday. He was slapped with six sections of the IPC.
The police said Gogoi had “delivered speeches against communal harmony and announced that they are ready to use hangdang (machete) and AK-47 rifle” in their movement against the government’s bid to settle outsiders. “The RSS-backed BJP government has arrested me for speaking up for the Assamese people. My crime is that I opposed the government’s decision to dump outsiders, specifically Hindus from Bangladesh, on Assam,” an agitated Gogoi told reporters at the police station.
The KMSS leader accused CM Sarbananda Sonowal and health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma of betraying the Assamese people to appease Bengali Hindu migrants that the RSS wants rehabilitated.
Sonowal, reacting to the arrest, said his government cannot tolerate anyone threatening to take up arms. “Such threats undermine democracy,” he said.
But opposition parties said the government has tried to curb the freedom of expression.