Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma after chairing the first of the half-yearly meeting with the Superintendent of Police from all the districts said the state will adopt a zero tolerance policy against cattle and drugs smuggling.
Sarma addressing a media interaction after the meeting at Kaziranga on Wednesday said the state police will “strike at the root” of these two menaces so that the department can stop the crime before it happens.
“Assam will adopt zero tolerance against cattle smuggling. Cow will not be allowed to enter both legally or illegally into the state and cannot be transported within the state. Most of the cows come from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal. We will strike at the root and stop this before it happens,” Sarma told media.
Assam, owing to its porous riverine border with Bangladesh in its western and southern fronts, have been used as a transit route for cattle smugglers to transport cow to the neighbouring country Bangladesh.
Sarma had also said, “Forget peddling, Assam will not even be a transit route for drugs. All the SPs have been instructed that neither drugs can be peddled within their jurisdiction nor it can be transported outside their districts to another.”
He said the state is going to open up seven new forensic labs in the next six months so that narcotics seized from the smugglers are processed properly and the miscreants do not get bail.
Sarma, who also holds the Home portfolio, said he had discussed on the three major wings of policing — law and order, organised crime and intelligence gathering — in the first of the half-yearly meetings with the SPs of the districts in order to turn the state’s police into a “competent and professional” force.
” Similar meeting will be held after every six months. Next meeting will be held at Duliajan (in Upper Assam’s Dibrugarh district). Infact, a similar meeting will be held with all the deputy commissioners every six months, the first of which will be held between August 15 and 30 this year at Diphu and another half yearly meeting combined with the SPs and DCs will be held every six months,” Sarma said.
Sarma also said that Assam currently has 1.05 lakh pending cases which will also be closed and in order to do so, a recruitment drive for sub-inspectors, law officers and prosecution consultants will be initiated soon.
When asked if peace talks with the United Liberation Front of Asom-Independent (ULFA-I), that is currently under ceasefire due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, will be initiated, Sarma said, “We want that this issue be resolved through talks amicably. Further concrete steps will be discussed with the Union Home Minister Amit Shah when he will visit Assam this July.”