New Delhi: Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Monday urged people to stay calm as normalcy is returning in the state and requested them to not spread “rumours” like citizens migrating to neighbouring Bangladesh to become beneficiaries of the Citizenship Amendment Act.
A wave of protests over the Centre’s move on Citizenship Act swept through the northeastern states resulting in violent riots that have spread across states now. A curfew had clamped down various parts of Assam over the last few days, which has been partially lifted now.
“In Guwahati, we have withdrawn the curfew and now there will be no curfew in the day time. However, night curfew will remain imposed until we review the situation and take a decision in this regard,” Sarma said, addressing a press conference in the Guwahati.
“The decision on restoration of the internet services in the state will be taken in a short span of time,” he added.
Internet services in Assam was further suspended by another 24 hours on Monday to prevent the misuse of social media platforms in disturbing peace and maintain law and order in the state.
Speaking on the rumours that have sparked the agitations further, the state Finance Minister said, “In the Guwahati mob violence, we have witnessed a specific pattern. There is a huge involvement of people who are not citizens of Guwahati and who have come from the lower Assam districts whether they have come for participation in agitation or they have been brought here by some kind of design, that will be investigated by govt. A proper investigation team will be announced in a day or two.”
“It’s a rumour that outsiders will enter the state. We are examining if some people are saying this out of their ignorance on the CAA or to disturb public peace and tranquility,” he said.
Commenting on the disrupted daily life, Sarma said, “In entire Assam, 136 cases of vandalism and other related crimes have been registered. So far, police have arrested 190 persons in connection with recent incidents happening in Guwahati and in the entire state.”
“There was vandalism in Sankardev Kalakshetra in Guwahati. When we investigated, we found involvement of a Congress activist in that particular incident. If he has done it in his individual capacity or as part of an organised crime that needs to be probed,” he added.
The state Finance Minister also said that while the India-Japan summit that was scheduled to be held in Guwahati has been postponed, the venue of the event will not be shifted. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said, is “very particular” that the summit should take place in Guwahati.