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CM, Himanta diverting issue: Mahanta

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, July 14 � Former Chief Minister and AGP leader Prafulla Kumar Mahanta today accused Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma of diverting the major issues of the Rs 1,000-crore NC Hills district scam including the militant-politician nexus by unnecessarily raising matters having no bearing on the main subject.

Questioning why the State Government was reluctant to hand over all the departments to the CBI for a thorough probe, Mahanta said that such large-scale financial irregularities were impossible without the blessings of higher-ups.

�The Chief Minister who holds the Finance portfolio is accountable for every rupee spent in the State as much as the Home Minister is responsible for law and order,� he said, adding that on a single instance alone, an officer had fraudulently withdrawn Rs 18.5 crore by misusing his post as he was holding dual charge.

Mahanta who was addressing the media said that the Congress was getting increasingly wary of the Opposition unity against its misdeeds, and was indulging in irrational talking.

On the allegations of Himanta Biswa Sarma that he had given the latter a CD that was �damaging� to the AGP, Mahanta termed it a false propaganda and dared him to prove his allegations. �I never met Sarma at a Delhi restaurant as alleged�CDs can easily be doctored and I have already written to the Assembly Speaker to get the CD (provided Sarma places it in the Assembly as he had announced) to have it forensically tested outside the State for verifying its authenticity,� he said.

Mahanta said that Sarma had a history indulging in cheap and pointless utterances, and that his latest statements corroborated his sick mental state. �Sarma has failed to answer any of the serious charges levelled by peasant leader Akhil Gogoi and is simply beating about the bush, trying to skirt the issues raised by him.

Mahanta said that the Chief Minister would do well to first have a probe into the subject matter of the lost files concerning the TADA case against Sarma rather than giving undue importance on how it was recovered.

The former Chief Minister claimed that the Congress-ultra nexus had become evident from the reported statement of DHD-J chairman Jewel Garlosa inside court premises who said that DHD-J �c-in-c� Niranjan Hojai had left for Nepal with the Government�s knowledge and not �fled� as the Government wanted the people to believe.

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