NIA rebuts reports of involvement of Assam ministers in scam
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Last Updated: Sunday, February 21, 2010, 23:51
  
Shillong: The National Investigating Agency on Sunday "strongly rebutted" a report in a weekly magazine which alleged that names of seven Assam ministers have been mentioned in its report on misuse of development funds for the North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council.

"The report is totally false. We have sent a strong rebuttal to the Union Home Ministry yesterday," an SP of NIA, who is investigating the misuse of funds, said here.

He said the agency has not named any minister in its report as there was no evidence.

"The media report also mentioned that police officials took huge amounts of money. Nothing of that sort has come to our knowledge," the official, who was also a part of the investigating team, said.

The national weekly magazine in its February 7 issue had carried a report alleging that the names of seven Assam ministers, including a Congress MP and an MLA and a former governor, have been mentioned in the NIA's report on misuse of development fund for the North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council (NCHAC), triggering an uproar in the state.

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has already shot off a letter to the magazine on his government's position regarding the report alleging involvement of seven state ministers in the Rs 1,000-crore scam and threatened it with legal action.

Forest minister Rockybul Hussain had yesterday filed a criminal defamation case against the weekly.

The anti-terror federal agency in November last had filed a charge sheet in its first case against 14 persons, including Dima Halam Daogah (J) insurgents and elected members of the North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council, for allegedly siphoning off development funds worth crores of rupees for "procurement of arms and ammunition from foreign arms dealers".

The nexus was unearthed following the arrest of two DHD (J) members with Rs one crore in cash early last year. The duo, Phojendra Hojai and Babul Kemprai, admitted before the Assam police that the cash was handed over to them by the chief of NCHAC Mohit Hojai for securing arms for the outfit.

The case was subsequently handed over to NIA in June, considering the inter-state ramifications of the terror financing network in the Northeast.

Those who have been charge sheeted are chief of DHD (J) Jewel Garlosa and commander-in-chief of the outfit Niranjan Hojai, chief of the NCHAC Mohit Hojai (a politician), Mizo arms dealer Vanlal Chana, Mizo gunrunners Malsawmkimi (a woman) and George Lawmthang and state social welfare department deputy director R H Khan among others, the NIA official said.

PTI


First Published: Sunday, February 21, 2010, 23:51


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