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Call to release Akhil Gogoi

By STAFF REPORTER

GUWAHATI, Nov 16 - Leader of Opposition in the State Assembly Debabrata Saikia has appealed to Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal to release KMSS leader Akhil Gogoi �for the sake of keeping democratic values alive�.

In a letter to Sonowal, Saikia said he feels that the government�s bid to lengthen the jail term of Akhil on various charges, slapped one after another, by �misusing� the legal provisions, has not only curbed his (Gogoi�s) individual freedom, but also violated human rights.

The act of slapping charges on the KMSS leader one after another, involving him in acts like murder and treason, has made it clear that the government has some motive to fulfil some vested interest. Significantly, many of these charges are 10 to 12 years old, said Saikia.

He reminded Sonowal that the Supreme Court had observed in a recent verdict that opposition to the policies of the government cannot be treated as an act of treason. But, the process of arresting Akhil and the bid to lengthen his jail term indicate that the State government is treating opposition to its policies as acts of treason, Saikia said.

The KMSS leader has been raising the issues of the river projects, privatisation of the oilfields, corruption, rise in prices of essential items, land settlement rights, eviction, among others, as have been raised by the other political parties. He has also been leading popular movements on these issues.

There should have been attempts at resolving the issues through negotiation. But instead, the State government has preferred the path of gagging the voice of the KMSS leader by putting him behind bars for a long period, alleged Saikia.

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Call to release Akhil Gogoi

GUWAHATI, Nov 16 - Leader of Opposition in the State Assembly Debabrata Saikia has appealed to Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal to release KMSS leader Akhil Gogoi �for the sake of keeping democratic values alive�.

In a letter to Sonowal, Saikia said he feels that the government�s bid to lengthen the jail term of Akhil on various charges, slapped one after another, by �misusing� the legal provisions, has not only curbed his (Gogoi�s) individual freedom, but also violated human rights.

The act of slapping charges on the KMSS leader one after another, involving him in acts like murder and treason, has made it clear that the government has some motive to fulfil some vested interest. Significantly, many of these charges are 10 to 12 years old, said Saikia.

He reminded Sonowal that the Supreme Court had observed in a recent verdict that opposition to the policies of the government cannot be treated as an act of treason. But, the process of arresting Akhil and the bid to lengthen his jail term indicate that the State government is treating opposition to its policies as acts of treason, Saikia said.

The KMSS leader has been raising the issues of the river projects, privatisation of the oilfields, corruption, rise in prices of essential items, land settlement rights, eviction, among others, as have been raised by the other political parties. He has also been leading popular movements on these issues.

There should have been attempts at resolving the issues through negotiation. But instead, the State government has preferred the path of gagging the voice of the KMSS leader by putting him behind bars for a long period, alleged Saikia.