Guwahati, February 23, 2019
Firebrand peasant leader Akhil Gogoi on February 23rd, 2019 slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and demanded the “immediate transfer” of Golaghat Superintendent of Police and Deputy Superintendent of Police over the hooch tragedy.
“Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and Assam Excise Minister Parimal Suklabaidya must apologise. We will stage a protest on February 24th, 2019 demanding a total ban on the sale of liquor,” he said which addressing a presser here on February 23rd, 2019.
He added, “The Britishers had killed people by providing opium, now the BJP government is trying to kill people by providing poisonous liquor. A syndicate is going in Assam and the liquor is the main source of earning revenue for the BJP. The ruling party has introduced the local liquor policy. Khumtai MLA Mrinal Saikia receives the commission from the local liquor sellers. Administrative incompetence has led to the tragedy.”
The death toll in the Assam hooch tragedy has crossed 100, with the latest estimates putting the number at 117 dead and above 130 others still hospitalised. Many of them are on ventilator support, and the death toll is expected to climb in the next few hours.
“The incident occurred due to the government’s sheer negligence towards a particular community of Assam. The tea garden workers are bribed with liquor bottles during elections. Golaghat district has become the hub of criminal activities. To my knowledge, four persons in Golaghat are illegally running the business of the locally brewed liquor,” Gogoi said.