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  • Asom


    I. Overview. 1

    II. Human rights violations by the security forces 2

    a. Disappearance. 2

    b. Violations of the right to life. 3

    i. Custodial deaths 3

    ii. Extrajudicial executions 3

    c. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture. 5

    III. Violations of International Humanitarian Law by the AOGs 6

    a. Violations of the right to life. 7

    b. Abductions 9

    IV. Judiciary and administration of justice. 10

    V. Status of the SHRC. 10

    VI. Freedom of the press 11

    VII. Violations of the rights of indigenous peoples 12

    a. Land alienation and displacement 13

    b. Non-implementation of affirmative action in employment 13

    VIII. Violence against women. 14

    IX. Violations of the rights of the child. 15

    X. Status of internally displaced persons 17

    XI. Violations of the prisoners’ rights 18  

     


     

    I. Overview


    Ruled by the Indian National Congress party, Asom witnessed more violence during 2007. The peace process between the Government of India and United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) which ended in despair in 2006 could not resumed. However, the ceasefire agreements with the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) and the Dima Halam Daogah (DHD)[1] continued.

    According to the figures received by Asian Centre for Human Rights through the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the NHRC received eight cases of deaths in police custody in Asom during the period of 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007. ACHR has also documented other cases of deaths in police custody during 2007.

     

    The common people were victims of blatant human rights violations at the hands of the security forces, both the State Police and Central armed forces, in the name of “counter-insurgency operations”.

     

    The armed opposition groups (AOGs) in Assam were responsible for maximum cases of violations of international humanitarian law including violation of the right to life, torture and abduction. The killings of the Bihari labourers, abduction and murder of kidnapping of Food Corporation of India’s (FCI) Executive Director and head of North- Eastern region, P C Ram and the killings of and Purnendu Langthasa and Nilendu Langthasa-both sons of veteran Congressmen and former minister G.C. Langthasa clearly establish that the armed groups were responsible for more human rights violations.

     

    II. Human rights violations by the security forces

     

    The security forces were responsible for serious human rights violations including arbitrary arrest, detention, torture, rape and extrajudicial killings. According to the 2006 Annual Report of NCRB, a total of 19 complaints were received against the police personnel in Asom during 2006. Departmental inquiry was ordered into 19 cases and judicial inquiry was ordered into 1 case. Six police personnel were sent for trial during the year. Only in one case trial was completed.[2]


    a. Disappearance

     

    During 2007, no new disappearances were reported from Asom. However, the disappearance of six leaders of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) viz Ashanta Baghphukon, Robin Neog, Bening Rabha, Nilu Chakraborty, Ponaram Dihingia, Naba Changmai[3] who have beem missing since ‘Operation All Clear’ launched by Royal Bhutan Army in December 2003, continued to remain a concern. On 21 March 2007, the wives of these missing ULFA leaders began an indefinite hunger strike demanding that the State Government divulge the whereabouts of their husbands and the resumption of direct talks between the Government of India and ULFA.[4] As their health deteriorated, the Assam police arrested all of them on 30 March 2007 on charges of “attempt to commit suicide” and admitted them at the Gauhati Medical College Hospital where they were give nasal feed.[5]


    Meanwhile, the habeas corpus petition filed in January 2005 by Shyamali Gogoi with regard to the above disappearances continued before the Gauhati High Court. The Ministry of Defence, Government of India submitted a list of captured and missing ULFA militants in June 2006 after more than a year after the direction of the High Court in May 2005 and again almost a year later i.e. on 30 March 2007, the High Court directed the Defence Ministry to file further affidavits by 12 April 2007 clarifying the apparent discrepancies between the RBA list of persons handed over to the Indian Army and the list submitted to the Court.[6]


    On 12 April 2007, the Assistant Solicitor General representing the Defence Ministry sought more time to file a further affidavit on the ‘original list’ of captured militants and the hearing adjourned to 14 June 2007.[7] But the last hearing held on 14 June 2007 also remain inconclusive as the affidavit filed by the Union Government says, the Bhutan Government did not provide a written list of the persons of the Indian origin arrested during the Operation All Clear.[8]


    The courts also directed the Army to pay compensation to families of disappearance victims. On 19 December 2007, a division bench of the Gauhati High Court comprising Chief Justice J Chelameswar and Justice Hrishikesh Roy directed the Army authorities to pay Rs 3 lakh as compensation to the family of one Muleswar Moran of Tinsukia district who disappeared from the custody of Army on 28 July 2003.[9]


    b. Violations of the right to life 

    i. Custodial deaths

     

    According to the figures received by Asian Centre for Human Rights through the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the NHRC received eight cases of deaths in police custody in Asom during the period of 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007. ACHR has also documented other cases of deaths in police custody during 2007.

     

    On 12 May 2007, one Anil Boraik was allegedly tortured at the Khoomtai police outpost after he was arrested in connection with a theft case. He was detained at the outpost for two days. His mother Swagmoni Boraik alleged that Officer-in-Charge of Khoomtai police outpost, Narendra Nath Gogoi demanded Rs 20,000 in return for her son’s release. When the money was not paid, Anil was allegedly tortured in police custody. Later, the victim was sent to jail where again he was allegedly tortured and denied medical treatment leading to his death.[10]

     

    On 16 July 2007, Longki Ingti (35), son of Kasang Ingti of Dikhaw Ingti village was allegedly tortured to death at Dokmoka police outpost in Karbi Anglong district.[11]

     

    On 22 September 2007, Sathilal Singh alias Bhola died after allegedly being tortured by the police during his detention at the Tinsukia police station in Tinsukia district.[12]

     

    On 26 October 2007, Rajen Das, headmaster of Ulubari LP School, was allegedly tortured to death in the police lock-up at Mushalpur police station in Nalbari district.[13]

    ii. Extrajudicial executions

     

    According to the information obtained by Asian Centre for Human Rights through the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the NHRC received six cases of encounter deaths in Asom during the period of 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007.

     

    On 12 November 2007, the state government of Asom informed the State Assembly that the security forces killed 2,110 members of AOGs, and 226 security personnel and 146 civilians had also died in counter insurgency operations since 1990.[14]

     

    In 2007, Asian Centre for Human Rights documented several other cases of extra-judicial killings. The victims included:

    -          traders Nilikesh Gogoi (30 years) and Dulu Gogoi (36 years) who were shot dead by personnel of the Central Industrial Security Forces patrol team at Geleki Aathkhel in Sibsagar district on 24 January 2007;[15]

    -          Moniram Gogoi of Asomiya Gaon who was shot dead by the personnel of 44 Field Regiment at Tipamghat in Dibrugarh district on the night of 29 January 2007;[16]

    -          Congress party worker and finance agent Brojen Das of Ghasi Bebejia Dakhinpat under Roha police station of Nagaon district who was killed by Assam police on the night of 11 March 2007 at Vetmola village under Chabua police station;[17]

    -          Tea garden employee Budheswar Moran who was killed by jawans of the 6 Jammu and Kashmir Rifles at Doomdooma in Tinsukia district on 6 May 2006;[18]

    -          killing of a resident of Kakripara bazaar viz, Ashraful Hussain in firing by the 21st BSF at Kakripara on the Indo-Bangladesh border in Mancachar sector of Assam’s Dhubri district on the night of 29 June 2007;[19]

    -          Death of 60-year-old woman identified as Sabitri Rajbongshi after being hit by rifle butts by the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel at Noamati village at Nalbari town on the night of 8 September 2007;[20] and

    -          tea worker Sadananda Tantabai who was shot dead by the personnel of 316 Field Regiment at Desangpani under Kakotibari police station in Sibsagar district by mistaken him as member of ULFA on the night of 25 November 2007.[21]

     

    The security forces have been responsible for killing civilians in fake encounters. On 15 December 2007, civilian Lal Lumsiem was shot dead by the 5th Bihar Regiment in an alleged encounter at Hmar Veng in Karbi Anglong district.[22] On 19 August 2007, Sing Timung, a Class 12th student of Diphu Government College, was extra-judicially killed by team of police and Central Reserve Police Force in a fake encounter near Borlangpher in Karbi Anglong district.[23]

     

    The Gauhati High Court ordered payment of compensation in numerous instances of extra-judicial killings. In June 2007, the Army was made to pay compensation, ranging from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 3.5 lakh to the next of kin of those killed at the hands of the Army personnel.  The Army has paid compensation of over Rs 20 lakhs to the next of kin of the victims in 14 cases of extra-judicial killings.[24]

     

    In November 2007, the Guwahati High Court intervened to direct the state government to place the KN Saikia Commission report probing the “secret killing” which took place between 1999 and 2001. On 15 November 2007, the report of the KN Saikia Commission was given to the State Assembly. The Commission indicted the former Chief Minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, the then police hierarchy and the Home Ministry for the “extra-constitutional killings”.[25] Besides, the report of the earlier J.N. Sarma Commission was also placed before the Assembly. The Sarma commission’s report was rejected in August 2005 because it allegedly contained “glaring discrepancies” and did not identify responsibility for the killings.[26]

     

    The NCRB also recorded killing of four civilians in police firing during 2006.[27]  


    c. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture

     

    Arbitrary arrest, illegal arrest and torture were common. According to the figures received by Asian Centre for Human Rights through the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the NHRC received 26 cases of other police excesses in Asom during the period of 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007. The NHRC received no complaints of illegal arrest, unlawful detention during the same period. However, the Asian Centre for Human Rights documented several cases of arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture by the security forces in 2007.

     

    Innocent people continued to be the victims. Many were tortured on the suspicion of being members or having links with AOGs.

     

    On 17 October 2007, a group of eight personnel of the Kumaon Regiment stationed at Sarbhog, had gone to the house of 82-year-old Rajen Choudhury at Sukanjani village under Sarbhog police station and tortured the members of the family for more than five hours and ransacked the house. The Army personnel then took Rajen Choudhury’s son Koushik Choudhury to their camp. He was released after being allegedly tortured by giving electric shocks applied to the body. Similarly, another team of army personnel went to the house of one Sonit Das at Bairapur village under Sarbhog police station in Barpeta district and tortured Das and his family. Das was also taken to the army camp where he was allegedly tortured and electric shocks were applied to different parts of the body before he was released. Both the families lodged complaints to the Assam State Human Rights Commission.[28]

     

    Some other cases of arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture included:

    -          torture of family members of artiste Krishnamani Chutia by some Army personnel on the night of 10 January 2007;[29]

    -          arbitrary arrest of Tapeswar Hazarika, an employee of Goreswar HS School and two others identified as Madan Boro (17) and Banajit Basumatary (20) at Ramcha village under Goreswar Police station in Baksa district on 6 February 2007;[30]

    -          arbitrary arrest and detention of some members of the Peoples Committee for Peace Initiatives in Assam;[31]

    -          arbitrary arrest of more than fifty youths from Nalbari by police in Guwahati on charges of alleged links with the ULFA on 26 May 2007;[32]

    -          illegal detention of advocate Abhimanyu Baruah by the army at their camp at Paltanbazar in Guwahati after barging into his residence on 4 June 2007;[33]

    -          two activists of the Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad, Biplob Gogoi and Jayanta Das who were picked up by army personnel and allegedly tortured for having links with the ULFA in Dibrugarh district on 13 December 2007;[34] and

    -          Debokanta Gogoi, Phani Gogoi and Samel Aind who were picked up by the personnel belonging to the 268 Field Regiment and tortured during interrogation leaving scar marks on their body at Tingkhong in Dibrugarh district on 14 December 2007.[35]

     

    III. Violations of International Humanitarian Law by the AOGs

     

    Armed opposition groups (AOGs) were responsible for violations of international humanitarian law including violation of the right to life, torture and abduction.

     

    According to the State Government of Asom, nine armed opposition groups - United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA), Karbi Longri North Cachar Hills Liberation Front (KLNLF), Dima Halam Daogah (Jewel Garlosa) or Black Widow, United Liberation Front of Barak Valley, All Adivasi National Liberation Army, Kuki Revolutionary Army, Hmar People’s Convention (Democratic), Muslim United Liberation Tigers Front of Assam, Harkat-ul-Mujahideen - remained active in the State. While five armed opposition groups - United People’s Democratic Solidarity (UPDS), Dima Halam Daogah (DHD), National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB), Adivasi Cobra Militants of Assam and Birsa Commando Force - entered into ceasefire agreement with the Government.[36]

     

    a. Violations of the right to life


    On 12 November 2007, the state government of Asom informed the State Assembly that 3,395 civilians and 843 security personnel were killed by different armed opposition groups in Asom since 1990.[37]

     

    The armed opposition groups were responsible for indiscriminate killings of civilians especially through improvised explosive devices. On 30 September 2007, at least five persons were killed and 30 other injured when suspected ULFA cadres triggered three powerful explosions in Tinsukia district.[38]

     

    AOGs continued to target Hindi speaking people during 2007. According to a reply by Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain in the State Assembly in January 2007, as many as 201 Hindi speakers persons were killed by ULFA cadres since 2000.[39]

     

    During 2007, attacks on the Hindi speaking person increased. Some of the instances were:

    - 16 persons who were killed in separate incidents in Tinsukia and Diburgarh districts who were killed by suspected members of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) on 5 Jaunary 2007;[40]

    - 13 persons who were killed by suspected members of ULFA at Ghoramora Chapori under Sadiya police station on 5 January 2007;[41]

    - seven person who were kiilled at Borali Bari near Mahmara in Sibsagar district on 7 January 2007;

    - 6 Hindi speaking persons who were killed at Chokolia near Dimow and a brick kiln labourer at Sepon Chagolia in Moran area in Dibrugarh district on 7 January 2007;[42]

    - 5 persons who were shot dead at Kathalonipur Belbari village under Tengakhat police station in Dibrugarh district in May 2007[43] and

    - 9 persons who were shot dead by suspected ULFA and KLNLF cadres at Howraghat in Karbi Anglong district on 8 August 2007.[44]

     

    While the ULFA also allegedly targeted the functionaries of the ruling Indian National Congress Party, other armed groups also killed political opponents. The victims killed in 2007 included:

    -          Khagen Charengia, a 55-year-old primary member of the Congress who was shot dead on the night of 28 January 2007 at Hingpara Gaon under Moranhat Police station in Sibsagar district;[45]

    -          Abdul Baser, 55, a grassroots-level Congress worker who was shot dead at Kacharipam village under Dergaon police station in Golaghat district at around 8 a.m. on 1 February 2007[46];

    -          Purnendu Langthasa and Nilendu Langthasa-both sons of veteran Congressmen and former minister G.C. Langthasa who were shot dead by suspected Dima Halom Daoga cadres on 4 June 2007 at Umrangshu in North Cachar Hill district;[47]

    -          Congress leader Darbitham Hmar who was killed by suspected cadres of the Dima Halam Daogah (DHD) in North Cachar Hills district on 3 November 2007;[48] and

    -          Bharatiya Janata Party leader Munindra Singh Lahkar who was shot dead by unidentified gunmen at Rangiya in Guwahati on 13 December 2007.[49]

     

    Many civilians were also killed. The victims included

     

    - 3 farmers identified as Birka Rai, Jeevan Thapa and Sanjay Marapasi who were shot dead by suspected Black Widow militants at Scent Bagan village under Umrangso police in North Cachar Hills district on the evening of 5 March 2007;[50]

    - Dima Halon Doaga (DHD) leader Dijon Haflongbar at Manderdisa NC Hills in indiscriminate firing by the Black Widow Jewal Gorlosa group on 26 March 2007;[51]

    - a former member of the ULFA, identified as Ratneswar Barman who was shot dead by suspected Ulfa members at a village near Tamulpur in Chirang district under Bodoland Territorial Autonomous District Council (BTADC)  on 11 April 2007;[52]

    - ex-Executive Member of Bodoland Territorial Council and Santhali leader Badan Hazda who was killed on 1 may 2007 by suspected Adivasi Cobra Militant of Aom cadres;[53]

    - Mantu Daimari, an ex-BLT cadre of Narayanpur and Jalen Basumatary of Karaibari Gangaram Basumatary of Doomruguri in Baksa district and Rajen Narzary of Bogijuli, Sonitpur district who were shot dead at Mushalpur in Baksa district on 19 May 2007 suspected NDFB cadres;[54]

    - Grifer Dimasa of the Dilip Nunisa led DHD who was shot dead by a two-member squad of suspected DHD (Jewel Gorlosa faction) in his house, 4 km from Umrangsu town in North Cachar Hill district in the morning of 25 May 2007;[55]

    - All Koch Rajbangshi Students’ Union (AKRSU) worker Madan Mohan Roy alias Lalchand Roy by unidentified militants at Borghopa Upendrapur under Gossaigaon police station in Kokrajarh district on 9 July 2007;[56]

    - Ashok Das (30), Santosh Mahato (40), Bidhu Das (30) and Manna Deb (25) who were shot dead reportedly by Dima Halam Daogah of Jewel group (DHD J) on the night of 7 August 2007 at Harinagar under Joypur police station in Cachar district;[57]

    - eight saw mill workers who were killed by suspected cadres of Black Widow (anti-talk faction of Dima Halam Daogah) at Umransghu in North Cachar Hill district on 27 November 2007;[58]  and

    - four labourers who were beaten to death by suspected cadres of Gorlosa faction of the Dima Halam Daogah (DHD) at Lanku under Umrangsu police station in North Cachar Hills district on 14 December 2007.[59]

     

    b. Abductions

     

    The AOGs carried out several kidnappings of civilians often demanding ransom. Failure to meet their demands resulted in killing of the hostages. During 2007, Asom witnessed large numbers of kidnappings. In the month of July 2007 alone, over 12 people were abducted from different parts of the state, including 11 people in Karbi Anglong district alone. According to data of the Asom Crime Investigation Department, in 2006, a total of 303 adult males and 460 adult females were abducted of which 274 males and 384 females were recovered. In addition, 365 male children and 690 female children were kidnapped during the same period. Out of them 337 male and 648 female children were recovered. The figures in reality could however be higher, because many abduction cases involving women and girl children go unreported.[60]

     

    A particularly prominent case was the kidnapping of Food Corporation of India’s (FCI) Executive Director and head of North- Eastern region, P C Ram by ULFA. He was kidnapped along with his driver by ULFA cadres on 17 April 2007 from Ulubari area of Guwahati.[61] Ulfa initially asked for Rs 21 crore in ransom but later, it demanded the release of its two jailed leaders, Mrinal Hazarika, the “commanding officer” of the 28th Battalion, and Pallav Saikia, “commanding officer” of the 27th Battalion from jail in exchange of Ram’s release.[62]

     

    Others who have been abducted during 2007 included Sourav Bhoumik, a class III student of Borsing Memorial English School who was kidnapped by suspected members of the Adivasi National Liberation Army on 11 January 2007 from Sarupathar in Golaghat district; three others identified as Bilthon Hara, a schoolteacher, Keshob Sahu, the general secretary of the students’ union of Sarupathar College, and Anil Keketa, a farmer from Nagajori Janjan village in Golaghat district who were also allegedly kidnapped by the same armed group in January 2007[63]; Nabaranja Barman, an affluent trader belonging to Dimasa community who was kidnapped on the evening of 6 February 2007 by Hmar Peoples Convention Democratic (HPC-D) from his house at Kumacherra village under Lakhipur Subdivision of Cachar district[64]; Anil Agrawalla, a young businessman of Naharbari in Golaghat who was abducted 22 February 2007 by Assam National Liberation Army (ANLA)[65]; the manager and the assistant manager of the Symraipur Tea garden in Golaghat district who were kidnapped on 27 February 2007 by the ANLA members[66]; and a 12-year-old schoolboy, Rajat Agarwalla who was kidnapped on 7 June 2007 from near Sonari town in Sivasagar district by suspted ULFA members.[67]

     

    IV. Judiciary and administration of justice

     

    As on 1 January 2008, there were 3 vacancies against the sanctioned strength of 26 in the Gauhati High Court. While there were 35 vacancies against the sanctioned strength of 289 in the district and subordinate courts as on 30 September 2007. There were a total of 59,339 cases pending with the Guwahati High Court and a total of 2,10,232 cases were pending with the district and subordinate courts as on 30 September 2007.[68] In
    July 2007, the Gauhati High Court launched the E-Court Project to expedite cases.[69]

     

    V. Status of the SHRC

     

    The Assam State Human Rights Commission (AHRC) continued to be ineffective and its recommendations were ignored by the State Government. While inaugurating an awareness campaign about human rights heralded by Barak Human Rights Protection Committee (BHRPC) in July 2007 at Banskandi near Silchar, member of National Human Rights Commission Dr Shyam Bhadra Medhi admitted that since AHRC was constituted and controlled by the State, it could not work independently or live up to people’s expectations.[70]

     

    However, the AHRC made some significant interventions during the year. It took suo motu cognisance of newspaper reports of human rights violations.  In a few cases the AHRC directed the State Government to pay compensation to the victim or to their next of kin. In August 2007, AHRC directed the Home and Political Department of the Asom Government to pay a compensation of Rs 30,000 to Hitendra Kumar Neog, a resident of Rangdoi Da-gaon, Jorhat, who was grievously injured when a team of police and Army personnel barged into his house and shot him over a mistaken identity on 21 January 2006.[71]

     

    VI. Freedom of the press

     

    Media came under attack both from the armed opposition groups and the State.

     

    On 31 January 2007, the ULFA asked two senior newspaper editors - Kanakasen Deka of Dainik Agradoot and DN Chakravarty of Dainik Asam[72] - to give up journalism for publishing a story accusing it (ULFA) of taking money from the State Government to allow the 33rd National Games to take place without violence.[73] Threats were again issued by Ulfa chairman Arbinda Rajkhowa and Commander-in-Chief Paresh Baruah to D.N. Chakravarty in June 2007 for opposing Ulfa’s violence.[74]

     

    The NE TV company came under attack from both ULFA and the State government. On 1 February 2007, ULFA served a ‘quit Assam’ notice on Guwahati-based satellite news channel NE TV[75] for airing a news story alleging that ULFA had taken money from the State Government for letting the National Games pass off peacefully.[76] On 4 February 2007, ULFA renewed its warning to the news channel to prove its allegation or else close.[77] The Assam Olympic Association (AOA) whose president is Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi had withdrawn the press accreditation to NETV to cover the 33rd National Games after a public spat between Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and chairperson of NE Television Networks Private Limited, Manoranjana Singh over the news channel’s airing of the State’s involvement in the allegations. Press accreditation was restored only after the Supreme Court directed the Assam Olympic Association to do so on 9 February 2007.[78]

     

    On 20 June 2007, Asom police arrested Kakopathar-based local correspondent of Asomiya Pratidin, Robin Dhekial Phukon along with another youth on charges maintaining close links and working on behalf of the banned United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA).[79]

     

    On 8 August 2007, a police officer C S Chetri abused Samarendra Sharma, a staff photographer The Assam Tribune near Dighalipukhuri in Guwahati city when he was about to cross a police check point at around 6 p.m. Despite Mr. Sarma disclosing his identity, the police officer yelled at him in foul language and tossed his camera on the road damaging it. Sarma was detained for almost an hour before he was released after senior Government officials intervened.[80]

     

    On 3 October 2007, Anubhab Kumar, Changsari correspondent of Asomiya Khabar was arrested by police on the charge of having links to ULFA.[81]

     

    The media persons faced increased attacks from police and other government servants for exposing corruption. On 31 March 2007, a group of 20 security guards at the Guwahati Medical College Hospital (GMCH) beat up journalist Afrida Hussain and cameraman Nitul Deka of NE TV when they had gone to the hospital to file a report. It is alleged that instead of protecting the journalists, the police personnel present at the GMCH outpost ordered the assault. [82] 

     

    On 24 April 2007, Rajen Deka, a correspondent of the Dainik Asam at Mukalmua in Nalbari district was beaten up by Gafur Ali, Rafique Ali, Chafur Ali, Mrintu Ahmed and Barkshetri Child Development Project Officer (CDPO) Balen Barman for exposing corruption by the CDPO. The police failed to protect Mr. Deka as he was being beaten up by the attackers inside Mukalmua police station campus where he ran for help but also failed to take actions against the attackers.[83] 

     

    On 13 August 2007, a female correspondent of Asomiya Pratidin in Silapathar, Tultul Phukan was assaulted by contractors Padma Deori of Sripani Kapatali Deorigaon, Horen Chutia of Atkai Hatighar, Kamal Duwara of Naharani Atkai and Manik Duwora of Balijan Naharani at Atkai for exposing corruption in the process of building the Gainadiguiabund.[84]

     

    On the night of 2 December 2007, Bipul Kr Das of Asomiya Pratidin, was injured after being attacked by a mob at Mirza in Kamrup district.[85]

     

     

    VII. Violations of the rights of indigenous peoples

     

    According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the Ministry of Home Affair, Government of India, a total of 244 cases of crimes against Scheduled Tribes (STs) and a total of 282 cases of crime against Scheduled Castes (SCs) were reported in Asom during 2006. These included 26 murder cases, 24 cases of rape, 24 cases of kidnapping and abduction, among others against the STs, while 5 murder cases, 11 cases of rape, 27 cases of kidnapping and abduction, among others against the SCs respectively.[86]

     

    a. Land alienation and displacement

     

    Tribal and indigenous peoples of Asom continued to face encroachment of their lands by non-tribals. The All Assam Tribal Sangha (AATS) and other tribal organisations of the State have alleged widespread violation of land transfer rules and regulations in the existing 9 tribal belts and 28 blocks in the State. Cases of transferring of land to non-tribals or non-bonafide people were on the rise.[87]

     

    Non-tribal and non-bonafide people had bought plots of land individually or in the name of private school, societies, trust etc and they later used the plots for commercial purpose.[88]


    The tribal peoples and their organization blame the State Government and its agencies, most particularly the Circle Revenue offices for massive alienation of tribal lands to non-tribals and persons of doubtful nationality in complete violation of the Assam Land Revenue Regulation Act 1886.

     

    In May 2007, it was reported that a section of politicians and the local Revenue officials had allotted 22.5 bighas of fertile land under tribal belts and blocks in Parbotjhora subdivision of Bodo Territorial Council to as many as 34 minority families. The Assistant Settlement Officer of Bagribari revenue circle had sent a proposal to the Deputy Commissioner of Dubri district to the effect that 22.5 bighas of land should be allotted to these families. Lands in the tribal belts had already been allotted for a burial ground as well as to 13 families of religious minorities in Bagaribari revenue circle.[89]

     

    b. Non-implementation of affirmative action in employment

     

    The state government of Asom failed to implement the job reservations policies for the Scheduled Tribes and Scheduled Castes in the State. According to estimates of the All Assam Scheduled Caste and Tribes Unemployed Association, Assam the backlog posts in various categories reportedly went up to 55,000 in the state as in March 2007. [90] On 28 February 2007, Minister for Welfare of Backward Classes and Plains Tribes (WBPT) Pramila Rani Brahma stated in the State Assembly that there were 17,404 backlogs against the reserved posts for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the State Government offices despite filling up a vacancy of 1,000 backlog post in 2006. She informed the House that the State Government intended to fill 5,000 backlog posts in 2007. [91]

     

    The All Assam Tribal Sangha also accused the state government of Assam of not following the 100-point Roster Programme as provided in the Reservation of Vacancies in Services and Posts (RVSP) Act, 1978 and the Rules 1983. [92]

     

    Funds meant for the tribals were not utilised fully. In December 2007, Makhan Chandra Doley, secretary general of the Coordination Committee of ST and SC revealed that the state government of Asom failed to utilize Rs 705.861 million out of a total of Rs 33,66.326 million released by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs from 1999-2000 to 2006-2007 as on 31 August 2006. [93]

     

     

    VIII. Violence against women

     

    According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the Ministry of Home Affair, Government of India, a total of 6,801 crimes were reported in Asom, accounting for 4.1% of total incidents in India during 2006. These included 1,244 cases of rape, 1,544 cases of kidnapping and abduction, 105 cases of dowry deaths, 2,548 cases of cruelty by husband and relatives, 1,290 cases of molestation, 29 cases under Immoral Trafficking (Prevention) Act of 1956, among others.[94]

     

    The majority of the cases go unreported.

     

    Violations by the security forces:

     

    Security forces were responsible for serious violations against women. On the night of 1 February 2007, Utpal Nath, a sub-inspector of Gossaigaon police station in Kokrajarh district barged into the house of one Anup Shau, at Bodiaguri village and repeatedly raped Shau’s wife Sabitri Shau in front of her husband and three children till 3 a.m. The policeman allegedly physically assaulted Anup, a handicapped man and his 10-year-old son Raju when they tried to resist.[95]

     

    On the night of 23 March 2007, a CRPF jawan named Pranjal Das barged into the house of a woman in the Rowriah area under Rowriah police outpost in Jorhat district and tried to rape her. The three-year-old daughter of the victimized woman who had been witness to the ordeal suffered shock and died at the Jorhat civil hospital the next day.[96]

     

    On 15 July 2007, a joint team of the army and CRPF allegedly raped two women and molested 11 others during a search operation at Lezai Baruagaon under Dibrugarh west revenue circle in Dibrugarh district. Following a complaint lodged by the state committee of the All India Youth Federation, the Assam Human Rights Commission has reportedly asked the district administration to submit a report on the incident.[97] On 24 July 2007, the Dibrugarh Deputy Commissioner also announced a magisterial probe into the matter.[98]

     

    On the night of 27 August 2007, two jawans of the Bihar Regiment entered the house of one Longsing Bey at Mansingh Bey Village under Howrahghat police station in Karbi Anglong district. The jawans tied his hands, blindfolded and made him sit in his veranda at gunpoint. They initially tried to molest Longsing Bey’s two daughters, but they managed to flee. Later, one of the jawans raped his middle-aged sister who could not escape. On 31 August 2007, the Deputy Commissioner of Karbi Anglong M. Angamuthu ordered Extra Assistant Commissioner Lalita Rangpipi to carry out an inquiry and submit the report within 15 days. Earlier on 29 August 2007, the victim was medically examined. [99] 

     

     

    IX. Violations of the rights of the child

     

    According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the Ministry of Home Affair, Government of India, a total of 252 cases of crimes against children were reported in Asom, accounting for 1.3% of total incidents in India during 2006. These included 11 cases of murder, 61 cases of rape and 25 cases of kidnapping and abduction.[100]

     

    Asom faces aserious challenge of eradication of child labour. As per the 2001 Census, there are 3,51,416 child labours in the state. In 1991, the figure was 3,27,598.[101]

     

    Child trafficking:

     

    Asom continued to be the major source and transit point for trafficking of women and children for the purpose of sexual and other forms of exploitation. As many as over 8,000 persons have gone missing in different parts of Asom from 2001 to 2005. Of these, 3,673 minors while 3,141 adults. However, only 1,386 minors and 1,301 adults could be located to date.[102] The Inspector General of Police (Crime Investigation Department) Dilip Borah stated that at least 500 women and children disappear every year in Assam and there is a need to create a separate force to deal with cases of human trafficking.[103]

    A study conducted in March 2007 by the Global Organisation for Life Development found that 48 per cent of the sex workers in brothels at Siliguri in West Bengal are from Assam and 70 percent of them are below 20 years of age. In April 2007, the Assam police rescued some girls working as call-girls around Delhi or used as “sex slaves” by wealthy landlords in states like Punjab and Haryana. Most of them are found to be hailing from camps of internally displaced people in Assam, particularly the Kokrajhar district. A survey by the Asom police revealed an organised racket of “recruiters” lured good women with job offers outside the state. While some of these recruiters were arrested it did not stop the trade. [104]

    Earlier, a survey by Domestic Workers’ Forum in 2005 revealed that more than 50,000 girls Assam were engaged in New Delhi as “domestic help” and their present number is roughly estimated to be around 65,000. In Assam, the most affected areas are places like Tongla, Sonitpur and Dekhiajuli, where almost every second house has one of their wards working in large cities.[105]

     

    In mid-May 2007, three girls namely Kohinur Khatun (18), Fatema Khatun (19), and Alowara Khatun (18) of village Kaimari, Part II, under Geolakganj PS in Dhubri district went missing and police arrested one Khabir Ali (28) of Alamganj Part-VI on 6 June 2007 in connection with their disappearance.[106] It was suspected that the three girls had been trafficked out of Assam.

     

    In June 2007, a police team from Orang police station in Udalguri district rescued 19 Adivasi children from Dimapur in Nagaland with the help of one of the trafficked Adivasi boys Niresh Mahato from No. 2 Saikiaburi while dozens of others remain untraced. The children were lured to Dimapur from different places in Udalguri district by one Bikash Bagh with the promise of free schooling and jobs.[107] Similarly in July 2007, The Assam Triribune reported that one Sarffuddin Ahmed, a contractor was threatening 11 teenage boys of a nearby tea garden of dire consequences if they do not immediately report back to him. The boys who have been identified as Sylvester Hembrom (17), Bijila Tanti (15), Sanju Suri (15), Ramesh Ekka (14), Ganga Ruri (14), Ratan Paswan (17), Ratan Paswan (17), Uttam Paswan (17), Sanjib Paswan (16), Lengra Gosh (16) and Baba Patar (16) were lured by the contractor to Dibrugarh for jobs but all of them later escaped after having been starved.[108]

     

    According to a report titled “Human Trafficking and HIV: Exploring Vulnerabilities and Responses in South Asia” of the United Nations Development Fund (UNDP), girls and women from West Bengal and Asom are being increasingly trafficked to States like Punjab and Haryana where they are sexually exploited and forced to give birth to a male child.[109]

     

    X. Status of internally displaced persons

     

    A study carried out by the North Eastern Social Research Centre (NESRC) in 24 districts of Asom found that, around 19 lakh people have been displaced or been adversely affected and 14,01,186 acres taken over for ‘development activities’ between 1947 and 2000 in the State.[110] Another report conducted by the Calcutta Research Group (CRG) claimed that a total of 23,000 families who were designated as ‘encroachers’ of forest lands out of a total of 37,677 IDP families were unable to get rehabilitation and were living in makeshift camps[111] as in April  2007.[112] Of these, 5,127 IDP families belonging to religious minorities were staying in 9 relief camps in Kokrajhar and Bongaigaon districts[113] and 2,200 IDPs belonging to the Santhal and Oraon tribes at Bishmuri Relief Camps in Kokrajhar district as in July 2007.[114]

     

    The NESRC claimed only 5 per cent of around 1.9 millions displaced or affected have been rehabilitated as the Asom State Government’s official estimates put the number of displaced or affected at 451,252 persons only and the quantity of land acquired at 391,773 acres only.[115] As on 13 August 2007, as many as 82 genuine land families including 7 families of Kebaranga block, 14 families of Bhalukaguri block, 10 families of No-2 Garmara block, 16 families of No-1 Garmara block and 20 families of Uchnara block in Dhemaji district whose lands were acquired for construction of Bogibeel bridge project on the northern bank of river Brahmaputra in Dhemaji district have been deprived of compensation.[116]

     

    The plight of the IDPs in Bongaigaon and Kokrajhar districts remain deplorable. The scheme for rehabilitation has been suspended as local people of Solabeel near Bijini town in Bongaigaon district resisted IDP rehabilitation in their area. Despite protection from Central Reserve Police Forces (CRPF), local people reportedly set fire to makeshift houses of 45 IDP families on the night of 22 January 2007. Some of the local residents have also challenged the scheme of the IDP rehabilitation at Solabeel area in Gauhati High Court.[117] On 27 March 2007, following disruptions of proceedings in the State Assembly over the rehabilitation of riot affected IDPs, the Minister in charge of relief and rehabilitation, Dr Bhumidhar Barman informed the House that a four-phase action plan was planned for the rehabilitation of those affected by the ethnic riots and that the first and second phases of the plan had already been implemented and the third phase was on schedule. The Minister however, stated that non-availability of land was creating problems for the Government in implementing the fourth phase, as the people who sought to be rehabilitated in the last phase were forest encroachers.[118]

     

    The conditions of displaced persons remained miserable in Asom. On 15 November 2007, a delegation of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) expressed concern over provisions for victims of ethnic violence sheltered in relief camps in Kokrajhar district of Asom. NHRC members KHC Rao and Kuldeep Lohani stated that during their visit to different relief camps in Kokrajhar district they had found that the ration supplies provided to 15 relief camps for ten days to 7,504 families was highly inadequate and medical facilities for the camp inmates was poor.[119]



    XI. Violations of the prisoners’ rights

     

    According to information obtained by Asian Centre for Human Rights through the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the NHRC received 17 cases of deaths in judicial custody in Asom during the period of 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007.

     

    The conditions of the jails remained poor. Till 31 January 2007, there were 8,038 male prisoners and 265 female prisoners in 27 jails of the state. There were 34 minors – 15 boys and 19 girls - with their mothers.[120]

     

    Of the 27 jails, including 6 Central Jails, the condition of the Hailakandi District Jail was the worst. As many as 139 prisoners, 77 of them serving life terms, are crammed into a semi-permanent structure that is meant to accommodate only 55 convicts. The jail was supposed to be shifted to a 20-bigha plot 17 years ago.[121]

     

    Torture in prisons continued to be reported from Asom. Basic services, especially medical were found to be unsatisfactory and erratic in most of the state jails.

     

    On 5 June 2007, an undertrial prisoner identified as Anil Boraik from Senduriting Tea Estate of Dergaon, was allegedly tortured at Golaghat jail and denied medical treatment resulting in his death.[122]

     

    Similarly, another undertrial prisoner Debo Toppo (19), son of Elias Toppo of Satyanarayan tea estate, Naharkatia died of diarrhea at Dibrugarh jail in the first week of July 2007.[123]

     

    On 21 December 2007, a team of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) visited the Central Jail in Jorhat following allegations of rights violation of the prisoners.[124]

     



    [1] . DHD unhappy over delay in peace talks, The Assam Tribune, 30 January 2007

    [2]. 2006 Annual Report of the National Crime Records Bureau

    [3] . ULFA ‘tries’ to build rights violation case against government, The Tribune, 3 April 2007

    [4] . Govt trying to locate missing ULFA leaders, The Assam Tribune, 29 March 2007

    [6] . ULFA and the politics of separatism, The Hindu, 17 April 2007 , available at: http://www.hindu.com/2007/04/17/stories/2007041702571000.htm

    [7] . ULFA and the politics of separatism, The Hindu, 17 April 2007 , available at: http://www.hindu.com/2007/04/17/stories/2007041702571000.htm

    [8] . Missing ULFA leaders’ case inconclusive, The Sentinel, 15 June 2007

    [9]. HC directs Army to compensate kin, The Tribune, 20 December 2007

    [10]. ACHR’s Complaint to NHRC, 5 June 2007  

    [11]. Custodial death condemned, The Assam Tribune, 25 July 2007

    [12]. ACHR’s Complaint to NHRC, Ref. No. AS/08/2007

    [13]. Judicial probe into teacher’s custody death demanded, The Assam Tribune, 2 November 2007

    [14]. 3395 civilians, 843 security personnel killed by ultras in Assam since 1990, The Shillong Times, 13 November 2007

    [15] . Two civilians shot dead by CISF at Geleki; Chief Minister orders judicial probe, The Sentinel, 25 January 2007

    [16] . People block Assam-Arunachal highway, The Times of India, 31 January 2007

    [17] . AASU in probe cry over killing, The Telegraph 14 March 2007

    [18] . Protest against ‘encounter’: CM orders probe, The Sentinel, 8 May 2007

    [19] . One killed in BSF firing, The Telegraph, 1 July 2007

    [20]. ACHR’s Complaint to NHRC, Ref. No. AS/07/2007

    [21]. Army guns down tea worker in Sonari, The Assam Tribune, 27 November 2007

    [22]. UPDS condemns Army for ‘false’ encounters, The Sentinel, 19 December 2007

    [23] . Police firing at Diphu, The Sentinel, 23 August 2007

    [24] . Army forced to pay heavy compensation, The Asian Age, 5 June 2007

    [25]. Mahanta at the helm of secret killings in Assam : Saikia Commission, The Hindu, 16 November 2007

    [26]. Court setback to Cong plan - Table reports on secret killings: HC, The Telegraph, 14 November 2007

    [27]. 2006 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [28]. Army atrocities alleged, AHRC approached, The Assam Tribune, 29 October 2007

    [29] . AASU condemns Army high-handedness, The Assam Tribune, 14 January 2007

    [30] . Army firing injures mentally-ill youth, The Assam Tribune, 16 February 2007

    [31] . Peace group claims harassment by cops, The Telegraph, 24 February 2007

    [32] . Nalbari residents protest youths’ harassment, The Assam Tribune, 31 May 2007

    [33] . Army under fire for alleged trespass and misbehaviour, The Sentinel, 7 June 2007

    [34]. Villagers protest army ‘torture’, The Telegraph, 16 December 2007

    [35]. Villagers protest Army excesses in Tingkhong, The Assam Tribune, 18 December 2007

    [36]. 3395 civilians, 843 security personnel killed by ultras in Assam since 1990, The Shillong Times, 13 November 2007

    [37]. 3395 civilians, 843 security personnel killed by ultras in Assam since 1990, The Shillong Times, 13 November 2007

    [38]. Ulfa hits pipeline, 5 killed in blasts, The Asian Age, 1 October 2007

    [39] . ULFA killed 561 from ’01 to Jan 10, ’07 , The Assam Tribune, 27 March 2007

    [40] . 16 killed in ULFA attacks in Upper Asom , The Assam Tribune, 6 Assam 2007

    [41] . ULFA killing spree claims 48 lives, The Assam Tribune, 7 January 2007

    [42] . ULFA militants gun down 15 more, The Deccan Herald, 8 January 2007

    [43] . Hindi-speaking people target again, 6 killed, The Indian Express, 16 May 2007

    [44] . 9 Hindi-speaking people shot dead at Howraghat, The Assam Tribune, 9 August 2007

    [45] . Another Congressman falls to ULFA bullets, The Sentinel, 30 January 2007

    [46] . Congress worker killed in Golaghat, The Telegraph, 2 February 2007

    [47] . NCHAC CEM, EM, PSOs shot dead - DSU wants transfer of DC, The Sentinel, 5 June 2007

    [48]. Dimasa rebels strike again, gun down 4 - Cong candidate, bodyguards shot dead, The Telegraph, 4 November 2007

    [49]. BJP leader shot dead in Assam , The Asian Age, 15 December 2007

    [50] . CRPF jawans among six injured in Dhemaji blast, The Sentinel, 6 March 2007

    [51] . Dimasa students flay DHD leader’s killing, The Assam Tribune, 4 April 2007

    [52] . Naga rebel, former ULFA ultra shot dead, The Hitavadaonline, 12 April 2007

    [53] . Cobra rebels suspect in Adivasi leader death, The Telegraph, 3 May 2007

    [54] . Protest rally taken out against Balipara killings, The Assam Tribune, 26 May 2007

    [55] . No let-up in Dimasa killings - - Third Nunisa man falls to rival Gorlosa’s hit squad, The Telegraph, 26 May 2007

     

    [57] . DHD (J) kills four; 7 cops suspended, The Sentinel, 9 August 2007

    [58]. Eight workers killed in Assam , The Telegraph, 28 November 2007

    [59] . Militants beat four labourers to death, The Telegraph, 15 December 2007

    [60] . Spurt in abduction cases in State alarming, The Assam Tribune, 18 July 2007

    [61] . ULFA demands Rs 21 cr for release of FCI official, The Assam Tribune, 20 April 2007

    [62] . No rebel barter for FCI officer’s release, The Telegraph, 18 June 2007

    [63] . Extortion network expands - Adivasi group on the prowl, The Telegraph, 22 January 2007

    [64] . Cops name Hmar outfit in kidnap, The Telegraph, 13 February 2007

    [65] . Call to end kidnapping, extortion at Phallangani, The Assam Tribune, 16 March 2007

    [66] . Call to end kidnapping, extortion at Phallangani, The Assam Tribune, 16 March 2007

    [67] . Militants abduct schoolboy in Assam , The Indian Express, 8 June 2007

    [68] . Supreme Court of India, Court News- October – December 2007, available at: http://supremecourtofindia.nic.in/CtNewsOct_Dec07.pdf

    [69] . E-Court Project launched at Gauhati High Court, The Assam Tribune, 11 July 2007

    [70] . Violation of human rights highlighted at Silchar, The Sentinel, 26 July 2007

    [71] . AHRC awards compensation to Hiten Neog, The Assam Tribune, 25 August 2007

    [72] . Protect scribes: Editors’ Guild, The Sentinel, 2 February 2007

    [73] . After NETV, outfit now asks two editors to give up journalism, The Indian Express, 1 February 2007

    [74] . Journalists face ire of Ulfa in Assam , The Asian Age, 2 June 2007

    [75] . After NETV, outfit now asks two editors to give up journalism, The Indian Express, 1 February 2007

    [76] . NETV sticks to stand, alleges link between Govt and ULFA, The Indian Express, 2 February 2007

    [77] . ULFA issues fresh deadline for NETV, The Sentinel, 5 February 2007

    [78] . SC cancels AOA order on NE TV accreditation, The Assam Tribune, 10 February 2007

    [79] . Scribe, youth leader held for ULFA links, The Shillong Times, 22 June 2007

    [80] . Cop misbehaves with Tribune photographer, The Assam Tribune, 9 August 2007

    [81]. Scribe in jail for showing police in bad light, The Assam Tribune, 8 October 2007

    [82] . AHRC seeks report on police assault on scribe, The Assam Tribune, 3 April 2007

    [83] . Assault on scribe creates widespread resentment, The Assam Tribune, 25 April 2007

    [84] . Assault on scribe flayed, The Assam Tribune, 21 August 2007

    [85]. Scribe assaulted at Chhaygaon, The Assam Tribune, 5 December 2007

    [86]. 2006 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [87] . Concern over transfer of tribal lands to non-tribals, The Assam Tribune, 1 February 2007

    [88] . Concern over transfer of tribal lands to non-tribals, The Assam Tribune, 1 February 2007

    [89] . ABSU: Design to allot tribal land to ‘minorities’, The Sentinel, 26 May 2007

    [90] . SC/ST body calls Assam bandh on March 22 over backlog of posts, The Assam Tribune, 16 March 2007

    [91] . Statutory provisions for SC, ST remain elusive, The Assam Tribune, 2 March 2007

    [92]. Govt has violated SC/ST job reservation rules, says tribes’ body, The Sentinel, 9 November 2007

    [93]. Over Rs 70 cr Central fund for tribals unspent, The Assam Tribune, 7 December 2007

    [94]. 2006 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [95] . Cop rapes woman in front of husband, The Telegraph, 3 February 2007

    [96] . Victim’s child dies from shock? - CRPF jawan arrested for rape attempt, The Sentinel, 24 March 2007

    [97] . Blockade call over ‘rape’, The Telegraph, 22 July 2007

    [98] . Probe ordered as jawans accused of molestation, The Indian Express, 25 July 2007

    [99] . Protests over rape in Diphu, The Telegraph, 1 September 2007

    [100]. 2006 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [101] . Rs 100-cr project for rescued child labourers placed before Centre, The Sentinel, 27 April 2007

    [102] . Missing cases rising alarmingly in State, The Assam Tribune, 23 April 2007

    [103] . Assam high on trafficking list - Police admit inability to check menace, The Telegraph, 9 March 2007

    [104] . http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/6430811.stm

    [105] . Adivasi girls falling prey to touts, The Assam Tribune, 7 May 2007

    [106] . Human trafficking cases on rise in Dhubri, The Assam Tribune, 12 June 2007

    [107] . 19 Adivashis rescued from Dimapur, Kingpin nabbed, The Sentinel, 29 June 2007

    [108] . Contractor threatens tea garden boys, The Assam Tribune, 14 July 2007

    [109] . Asom girls trafficked to Punjab : UN report, The Sentinel, 23 August 2007

    [110] . Only 5 pc of 19 lakh displaced people rehabilitated: Study, The Assam Tribune, 17 January 2007

    [111] . Report on displaced people in Asom released, The Sentinel, 24 February 2007

    [112] . Camp inmates take fast route to Delhi , The Telegraph, 11 April 2007

    [113] . Camp inmates take fast route to Delhi , The Telegraph, 11 April 2007

    [114] . Inmates yet to be rehabilitated, The Assam Tribune, 14 July 2007

    [115] . Lakhs displaced in Asom since 1947: Report, The Shillong Times, 18 January 2007

    [116] . 82 families allege non-payment of due compensation, The Assam Tribune, 14 August 2007

     

    [117] . The plight of refugees, The Assam Tribune, 15 February 2007

    [118] . Rehabilitation issue rocks Assembly again, The Assam Tribune, 28 March 2007 , available at: http://www.assamtribune.com/scripts/details.asp?id=mar2807/at05

    [119]. NHRC unhappy over Kokrajhar relief camps, The Assam Tribune, 16 November 2007

    [120] . 8,303 prisoners in State jails, The Assam Tribune, 13 March 2007

    [121] . Prisons present study in contrast  - Tale of Twin Jails: One serene, the other shoddy, The Telegraph, 1 February 2007

    [122]. ACHR’s Complaint to NHRC, 12 June 2007

    [123] . Prisoner dies, The Assam Tribune, 7 July 2007

    [124]. NHRC team visits Jorhat prison, The Sentinel, 22 December 2007

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