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Govt. in peace talks with KLO outfit to ensure peace in the North-East
Guwahati: With an aim to strengthen the peaceful environment in the region, the Assam government has initiated the process of peace talks with North-East's armed militant group, Kamtapur Liberation Organisation (KLO), after the outfit's Commander-in-chief Jiban Singha Koch and few other leaders gave up the path of militancy and opted to join the National mainstream.
A senior official of Assam police confirmed to ANI that Jiban Singha Koch is now at a camp in Guwahati where he is interacting with concerned officials. "The government has initiated talks with KLO," the police official said. Sources added that Jiban Singha Koch is currently in a Border Security Force (BSF) camp near Guwahati where apart from health checkups he is interacting with officials.
Assam Chief Minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday said in a press conference in Guwahati that Jiban Singha is now the state government's guest.
CM Sarma said, "It is very significant that the tribal insurgency in Assam is almost over as most of the tribal insurgency groups in the state from Bodoland Territorial Region (BTR) to Karbi Anglong, Dima Hasao have laid down their arms and joined in the peace talks with the government."
"In the year 2022, 757 arms, 5983 assorted ammunitions, 131 grenades, 26 IEDs and, 52 kg explosives were recovered and most of them have been recovered from NDFB, NLFT, Karbi, Dimasa, and Adivasi insurgents. Of the total recovery of arms in 2022, a majority of them were voluntarily deposited," he added.
The government signed several peace agreements with various tribal insurgent groups in 2022.
Kamtapur Liberation Organisation (KLO) was formed in 1995 and since then, the outfit has been engaging in arms struggle for a separate Kamatapur state.
On the other hand, the Assam CM has denied the formation of a separate Kamatapur state and said that it is just a creation of a section of media.
Former Additional Director General of Police (ADGP-SB), Assam, Pallav Bhattacharya told ANI that, the initiative taken by the KLO leadership led by Jiban Singha Koch to join the peace process with the government, is an excellent initiative.
"I hope the KLO leadership will think about the round development of its community which is spread out in Assam, North Bengal. They should discuss only development, not a separate state. I think, KLO's move will enhance for creation of a peaceful environment in the region," Pallav Bhattacharya said.
It is reported that KLO received arms training from the proscribed outfit United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) to gain a stronghold outside Assam.
Only ULFA-I is now underground, however, their activities have drastically declined over the years and the Assam government especially the Assam Chief Minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma is trying to find out a way to bring ULFA-I Chief Paresh Baruah to the negotiating table. (ANI)