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Sangma rules out talks with ultras

By CORRESPONDENT

SHILLONG, March 20 - Chief Minister Conrad Sangma today said militancy in not the problem, but is the �outcome of the problem,� which is socio-economic disparity.

Replying to a question asked by Opposition member from the Congress, PT Sawkmie, on holding negotiations with militants, Sangma said the Government is fully aware of the problems that have given rise to militancy in the State.

The Chief Minister assured the House that the present Government would try to address the problems of socio-economic disparity in the State, which has given rise to militancy. He said that the Government would look into the problems and try to address them as far as possible through multiple interventions. He, however, ruled out any negotiations with the militants.

�We want our brothers and sisters to join the mainstream. We want them to lay down arms and surrender. The Government will then rehabilitate them provided they fulfil the stipulated criteria,� Sangma maintained.

The Chief Minister pointed out that it is the policy of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) Government not to enter into negotiations with the militants. It is not the policy of the Central Government, he added.

�We will provide rehabilitation provided the militants surrender and shun violence. We want militancy to disappear from the State. This is the stand of the MDA Government,� Sangma reiterated. Under the rehabilitation package, Sangma said that a one-time monetary assistance of Rs 1.5 lakh is provided to the surrendered militants together with a monthly stipend of Rs 3,000. A screening committee headed by the Director General of Police and other senior officers follow the stipulated guidelines to decide who gets the package.

Sawkmie, on the other hand, insisted why the Government is unwilling to holds talks with the militants as some groups have shown their inclination to come to the negotiating table.

Meanwhile, NCP legislator Saleng Sangma alleged that the failure of the previous Congress-led Government was responsible for GNLA militant Sohan D Shira and others returning to the jungle after joining the mainstream.

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Sangma rules out talks with ultras

SHILLONG, March 20 - Chief Minister Conrad Sangma today said militancy in not the problem, but is the �outcome of the problem,� which is socio-economic disparity.

Replying to a question asked by Opposition member from the Congress, PT Sawkmie, on holding negotiations with militants, Sangma said the Government is fully aware of the problems that have given rise to militancy in the State.

The Chief Minister assured the House that the present Government would try to address the problems of socio-economic disparity in the State, which has given rise to militancy. He said that the Government would look into the problems and try to address them as far as possible through multiple interventions. He, however, ruled out any negotiations with the militants.

�We want our brothers and sisters to join the mainstream. We want them to lay down arms and surrender. The Government will then rehabilitate them provided they fulfil the stipulated criteria,� Sangma maintained.

The Chief Minister pointed out that it is the policy of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) Government not to enter into negotiations with the militants. It is not the policy of the Central Government, he added.

�We will provide rehabilitation provided the militants surrender and shun violence. We want militancy to disappear from the State. This is the stand of the MDA Government,� Sangma reiterated. Under the rehabilitation package, Sangma said that a one-time monetary assistance of Rs 1.5 lakh is provided to the surrendered militants together with a monthly stipend of Rs 3,000. A screening committee headed by the Director General of Police and other senior officers follow the stipulated guidelines to decide who gets the package.

Sawkmie, on the other hand, insisted why the Government is unwilling to holds talks with the militants as some groups have shown their inclination to come to the negotiating table.

Meanwhile, NCP legislator Saleng Sangma alleged that the failure of the previous Congress-led Government was responsible for GNLA militant Sohan D Shira and others returning to the jungle after joining the mainstream.

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