GUWAHATI, April 25 - Admitting that the Tarun Gogoi-led Government acted leniently against certain people who are facing accusations of serious crimes, including murder and extortion, the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) today said that it will call for inquiry and stern action against such persons, including those who have managed to get ticket from the BJP-led alliance, once the new Government takes charge at Dispur.
He also added that many senior officials have been working at the behest of the BJP, contrary to the norms laid down for bureaucrats to stay away from partisan politics, and the party will also demand action against such people.
Addressing a press conference here, APCC president Anjan Dutta said that the BJP-AGP-BPF alliance had given tickets to many persons, including some SULFA men, against whom serious allegations, even FIRs, exist for various cases, including murder and extortion.
�Wait till May 19. We will again form the Government. APCC will demand proper inquiry against such people,� he said.
Asked why the Congress regime did not take action against such persons if allegations of serious nature were pending against them, Dutta said, �We admit that the Tarun Gogoi Government was a bit soft. That also encouraged such elements. But once the new Government takes office, the Congress party will demand strict action against such people. There are also many bureaucrats who have been exposed as working at the behest of the BJP. We will also demand inquiry against those who have misused their official position.�
He added that no senior Congress leader tried to influence the bureaucracy. �If any official has proof that any senior Congress leader tried to use or influence them, they should state so publicly now.�
To a question regarding fielding of many persons by the Congress against whom also allegations and charges exist, Dutta said, �There are many SULFA men in the State. But not all of them have allegations of extortion or murder against them.�
He also added that the Congress did not field any candidate against whom any serious criminal charges exist and accused the BJP and AGP of patronising such elements. Dutta mentioned names of certain persons fielded by the AGP and the BJP in the Assembly polls and said the affidavits submitted by those persons clearly show their involvement in many serious crimes.
�Does the BJP lack leaders with clean image that it has to give tickets to such people� Everybody knows the kind of governance provided by the AGP during its two terms in power when extortion, violence and secret killings were the order of the day. BJP should explain if AGP has now become clean after tying up with it,� Dutta said.
He added, �When the BJP talks about change does it mean it wants to bring about change so that it can loot the State and create terror among people.�
Dutta also criticised a section of intellectuals who had reportedly called for �change�. �If anybody opposes the BJP, they are termed anti-national. But if somebody criticises the Congress, they become patriots. What kind of logic is that,� he said.
Asked if the high turnout during the Assembly polls point to voters� desire for change, Dutta said the turnout has been high because unlike earlier elections, this time the voters' list has been error-free and does not contain the names people who have died or those whose names figure in the list in more than one location.