New Delhi: Amid the rising chorus against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in Assam, the police arrested another Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS) leader, Sashi Senowa, on Monday, citing alleged “violence and vandalism.” He was later sent to judicial custody. This comes close on the heels of the arrest of youth leader Akhil Gogoi of KMSS for alleged violence in Assam during the anti-CAA protests
Senowa, who is the Dibrugarh unit joint general secretary of KMSS, was reportedly picked up from his house in Tingkong, according to a report in The Telegraph.
According to media reports, KMSS’s women’s wing, Nari Mukti Sangram Samiti, later thronged the jail in Dibrugarh along with local residents of Tingkong and blocked Rajgarh road, demanding Senowa’s immediate release, shouting slogans against the Sarbanand Sonowal-led Bharatiya Janata Party government. Dibrugarh is home district of Sonowal and has been seeing intense protests against CAA.
Meanwhile, in Jorhat, thousands of people formed a human chain in the shape of the state’s map, demanding the release of Akhil Gogoi, who has been in the forefront of the anti-CAA protests in Assam. Gogoi is being investigated by the National Investigation Agency for alleged Maoist links, and was arrested on December 12 and booked under the draconian Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
The Telegraph report cited KMSS Dibrugarh district secretary, Hemanta Konwar, as saying that: “Sensowa was arrested for his participation in the anti-CAA movement. The government is imposing the CAA without the consent of the people. His arrest is a ploy to dislodge the anti-CAA movement. We condemn such act. We demand his immediate release because he has done nothing. We will continue our protest till the CAA is repealed.”
Konwar also announced that in a novel protest, members of self-help women’s groups in the area had decided not to repay loans taken from government-aided micro finance companies till all the KMSS leaders were released.
As per Dibrugarh superintendent of police Sreejith Tiraviam: “We have scientific evidence against him (Sensowa) and arrested him on that basis. We have enough evidence against the persons who were involved in vandalism and violence.”
Among those who took part in the human chain was Akhil Gogoi’s mother, Priyada, who had last month gone on a hunger strike demanding her son’s release, who she sais was ‘framed’ by the government.
According to The Telegraph report, BJP ministers and leaders continued to face black-flag protests across Assam.
In Goalpara district, Assam agricultural and animal husbandry minister and AGP president Atul Bora was shown black flags by All Assam Students Union (AASU) members.
In Tinsukia district, Lakhimpur MP Pradan Barua and Sadiya MLA Balin Chetia were shown black flags at Dhola, again by AASU members and local residents, who sat in the middle of the road, shouting slogans against CAA and BJP. The protest was supported by the Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad, All Moran Students’ Union, All Assam Chutia Students’ Union and other organisations.