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Early probe in NC Hills scam not in sight

Early investigation to North Cachar Hills scam is not in sight because of several factors in the way of investigation agency. Although the Enforcement Directorate has examined the social welfare department official, R H Khan, other two important accused in the case are yet avoiding the probe. The chairman of the DHD(J), Jewel Garlosa and commander in chief, Niranjan Hojai could not be examined so far due to various legal hurdles. Lack of coordinated efforts in civil authorities is also alleged by certain sections of the society.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA), which had found that the fund received for the development of North Cachar Hills district, were diverted to the coffers of the militant organization for procurement of arms to wage war against the State due to politicians -militants nexus, suggested a thorough probe by Enforcement Directorate. The probe started but could not be completed. As the report goes on that the funds for development were given to militant outfit by the politicians in power and converted in dollars at Kolkata, then sent to Niranjan Hojai, who was in Nepal organizing the supply of arms.

In the process of investigation the investigation agency is facing problem as the chairman of the outfit Jewel Garlosa is kept in a Special jail in the headquarters of the Special Branch of Assam Police and the Enforcement Branch has the court’s permission to question the accused in the Central Jail only. The Directorate tried to know from Assam Police through a letter as to when Garlosa would be sent to Central Jail, so that the investigation could be done. But Assam Police simply replied that the jail authorities would inform whenever he is shifted. It gives an impression that the accused is not being shifted to Central jail in near future, which is likely to delay the investigation process.

As in the case of outfit’s commander in chief, Niranjan Hojai, it is reported that Hojai started hunger strike in the jail immediately after the Enforcement Directorate started the probe and he was shifted to the Gauhati Medical College Hospital (GMCH). Hojai could be grilled after the doctors declare him fit for investigation, which is also not expected soon, as no doctor would take the risk to declare him fit.

In the cases of both these accused the State’s Home and Health departments are involved and only they can facilitate the probe, if they desire. Since the case is related to politician militant nexus and as the NIA has pointed out its finger on certain high level politicians also, investigation in the case may bring more and more persons in the probe-net. Therefore, an early completion of investigation process cannot be expected.

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Daya Nath Singh's picture

Journalist; Guwahati Press Club office Secretary

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