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I might be arrested too as NPP is targetting BJP: Bernard Marak on Tura violence

First Published: 26th July, 2023 13:07 IST

Marak said that the violence was not pre-planned, it was actually instigated because three hours is a long time

Meghalaya BJP vice president and member of the district council of Garo Hills Autonomous District Council (GHADC) Bernard Marak on Wednesday turned the tables on Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on the conspiracy theory and political colour given to the Tura violence which broke out on July 24.

Speaking exclusively to Northeast Live, Marak said that it is the government and the police who are adding political colour to the violence and it is not supposed to be this way. Unfortunately, other than NPP, other political parties such as BJP, and TMC are being targetted. Anybody is being picked up and tagged as BJP or TMC workers which is not right.

“From the video circulating on social media, I came to know about the violence in Tura. People who have been doing the hunger strike. They requested support from the Garo community from all over Garo Hills and following this they all came to support them on that day outside the CM scacratariet. Chief Minister Conrad Sangma was supposed to meet them and answer them about their demands. I think it took extra time of three hours in the meeting inside the office. So people were hungry, tired and frustrated not knowing what was happening inside the office. I think it did not come to a proper conclusion. There was a lack of communication which actually led to misunderstanding and violence,” said Bernard Marak.

He said that the violence was not pre-planned, it was actually instigated because three hours is a long time.

When asked about his view on DGP LR Bishnoi saying that the attack was a possible assassination bid on CM Conrad Sangma, Marak said, he does not want to comment much on it.

Adding that maybe there is intelligence input on that and if it was an attempt on CM, Marak questioned, it might be a conspiracy but why the political parties are being dragged into it?

“Political parties have no interest to defend the Chief Minister or anything like this. Whatever we are doing we are doing it officially through negotiations. We do not have to take the law in our own hands,” he added.

He said, “I as an MDC support the winter capital demand too and even the backlog which has been demanded by the NGOs because it is a genuine demand and if we go there and join them, we stand there as an individual, not as a party member, so everybody who has taken part in the meeting maybe belonging to different parties, but they did not go for violence there. The violence broke out because a certain section of the group started it.”

Marak also said, “I came to know that I am also being targeted by the police. I was not even there. The way they are highlighting the half news and on other social media platforms, I might be arrested too.”

Citing how only two ladies among the arrestees in connection with the violence are being highlighted as BJP Morcha members, Marak said that the government is trying to eliminate all the threads by taking advantage of the situation.

He said that it is very unfortunate that these things are happening under the leadership of CM Sangma.

Alleging that NPP is targetting BJP, he said, “Let the law take its own course, why make propaganda out of it?

It may be mentioned here that on July 24 night, a mob gheraoed Chief Minister Conrad Sangma’s office in Tura, pelted stones and attacked his office while he was inside in a meeting with his cabinet colleague and PHE minister Marcuise N Marak and members of NGOs hearing their demands and grievances in which 18 police personnel were injured.

CM Sangma said that he agreed to meet the members of A’chik Conscious Holistically Integrated Krima (ACHIK) at their convenient venue since they had some concerns about Roster System and demand to declare Tura as the winter capital.

Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said that acts of violence would not be tolerated and “the law will be very firm” on any act of violence. He said that there is a line which people should not cross, and this time the line has been crossed.

Meanwhile, Meghalaya DGP LR Bishnoi said that the attack was pre-planned and was aimed at causing physical damage.

Also Read : Meghalaya: Cash rewards of Rs 10,000 announced for info on instigators of Tura violence

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