Assam has suffered a lot due to ongoing movement on ‘sovereignty’ by United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA), for last three decades. Thousands of innocent people including women, children, aged and media persons, have been killed during this period by the outfit activists and the security forces, due to this conflict. The State has been pushed backward and no development activities could be undertaken by the State government. The funds allotted by the Central Government to the State for development, were ‘misused’ by the State for ‘buying peace’ to the ministers, VIPs and the bureaucrats. Several efforts were done by eminent persons, organizations and intellectuals to bring the outfit to the negotiation table for amicable settlement of the disputes, but all in vain. The militant leaders, sitting outside the country ‘getting easy’ money through their cadres in arms spread throughout the interior places of State by issuing extortion notes putting their life to danger, did not come forward for any settlement. In the meantime, several general elections to the State Assembly and local bodies were held in which sixty to seventy percent turnouts were recorded. The people voted for stability and development, but the ULFA relied on violence and destructions.
Now, almost all the senior leaders of the outfit have either surrendered or apprehended by the security forces. They are trying to negotiate the issues, but for Paresh Baruah, the Commander-in- Chief of the outfit, they do not dare to do so. The time has come when the Paresh Baruah factor should be ignored and the country’s law prevail. There should be a fruitful talk with the leaders in custody without giving much importance to Paresh Baruah and legal action should be taken against the ‘killers of innocent people’.
The controversial reports have been aired about the whereabouts of Paresh Baruah, similar to that of Osama bin Laden. As nobody knows whether Osama bin Laden is alive or dead, the whereabouts of Paresh Baruah is also not known. The story revolves around Laden way. The media reports In Assam seem to be a fiction narrating his movement from Bangladesh to China and Myanmar (Burma) and his diktat pouring in media immediately after the activities going on here, as if he is present here. The newspapers and electronic media exhibit his file photos only and do not procure a fresh one taken during his movement. Chinese and Myanmarese media could have facilitated in this matter, if there was any truth behind it and somebody desired.
The recent citizens’ convention held in Guwahati reiterated its appeal to the Government to discuss peace with the ULFA without getting any consent from its leadership, who are in dilemma over the issue of Paresh Baruah. The messages of threat from Paresh Baruah are aired without substantial evidence. Sometimes intelligence reports are also found based on the media reports, which make the things even worse.
Facing serious finacial crisis, the ULFA cadres in many parts of the state, are now engaged in issuing extortion notices to the businessmen and others. The security agencies have been alerted and asked to have strict vigil on the situation. A number of extortion notes have been found as fake and forged and a few persons have been apprehended by security men in due course. In fact, ULFA has become a force of the past.