AGP(P) terms 'secret killings' report politically motivated

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Guwahati, Nov 23 (UNI) The Asom Gana Parishad (Progressive) (AGP-P) today reiterated that the Justice (Retd) K N Saikia Commission report on 'secret killings' was ''politically motivated'' to malign AGP(P) chief Prafulla Kumar Mahanta's image and the Justice had approached the enquiry with a 'preconceived mind'.

The party demanded an inquiry into all killings in the state since 1991 instead of looking into a fixed set of killings and said they would approach the court, challenging the legitimacy of the Saikia commission, which was constituted without tabling the previous Justice J N Sharma Commission report.

Both the commissions had looked into the killings of ULFA kin, allegedly by government hired killers and dubbed 'secret killings', between 1998-2001 during former Chief Minister Mr Mahanta's second regime as the head of AGP, of which the AGP(P) is a breakaway faction. The reports were tabled in the Assembly together last week.

The Justice Saikia Commission was constituted after the present Congress government rejected the previous Justice Sharma Commission report. However, a High Court ruling forced the government to place both the reports together.

Addressing a press conference here, AGP(P) vice-president Gunin Hazarika and assistant secretary Hemanta Kalita said, '' Justice Saikia had approached the enquiry with a preconceived attitude and it is obvious from his conclusions in each case he investigated by dragging Mr Mahanta into it.'' They also criticised the former judge for thanking the banned ULFA in his Commission report for cooperating for smooth conduct of the last year's Assembly polls. ''Justice Saikia was asked to enquire into 11 killings but he took up the additional 24 without any proper authorization. We will approach the court on all these issues,'' they added.

The AGP(P) leadership also questioned the timing of tabling of the report and said, '' It is clearly targeted at maligning Mr Mahanta and the party's image just ahead of the Panchayat polls (in December and January).'' The party will submit a memorandum to the Prime Minister on November 30 for enquiry into all killings in the state since 1991, they added.

UNI

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