Saturday, September 1, 2007

Games the politicians play (updated)

“Lust for power can make even dictators do funny things”, wrote Mariana Baabar, on sealing of deal between Pervez Musharraf and Benazir Bhutto for their political convenience; in the August 27th issue of Outlook. Not very different is the recent turn of events, unfolding in the political scenario of Arunachal Pradesh, almost out of Bollywood potboiler, which has had me, literally, glued to these turn of events. This political drama has masala of hatching its own assassination attempts, of confidant turning enemy, of politician-underground elements (read secessionist group) nexus and of accusations and counter-accusations; all in lust for power. Read on.

Flashback to year 2005: Gegong Apang is the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh.

An NLFA (National Liberation Front of Arunachal) lady cadre surrenders and confesses in front of magistrate and camera that on instigation by Takam Sanjoy (former advisor to Apang), Mukut Mithi (former C.M. and present Lt. Governor of Puducchery), MLA Kipa Babu, Hibu Robin (former SP Papum Pare and present DCP West Delhi Police) and Bamang Anthony (Chairman of Arunachal Citizen Rights) the outfit had attempted two unsuccessful assassination attempts on Apang. A case was registered against these accused with Crime Branch (Special Investigation Team) and the CD containing the confessional statement was reportedly submitted to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs and ACCI-I. However, no action was initiated against the accused till now.

Fast forward to year 2007: Apang is ousted and Dorjee Khandu instated as Chief Minister of Arunachal.

The accused Takam Sanjoy, MLA Kipa Babu and Bamang Anthony files a written complaint on July 22nd, almost after two years, stating that all the surrender and confession drama was staged managed at the behest of Gegong Apang to defame, implicate and conspire to criminalize political opponents and names Apang, his son Omak Apang, S.P. Bhutia (the then P.S. to Apang), Takio Tarak (the then Chairman of KVIC), SP Chuku Apa among others and accuses Apang of having links with UG elements. A case was registered and S.P. Bhutia and Takio Tarak arrested. Apang moves Guwahati High Court and obtain stays on all further criminal proceedings till August 27th.

24th August: Takam Sanjoy calls press conference to announce his war against criminalization of politics by Apang and to substantiate his accusation that the surrender and confession drama was stage managed.

"Police had already started inquiry into the case and unfolded many truths which have proved that the surrender of the lady cadre and her confession was stage managed and pre-planned."

-Echo of Arunachal

This entire episode has left me perplexed with so many unanswered questions. Why action/investigation was not initiated against the accused in the foiled assassination attempt so far? What kept them holding? Was it because it could have opened can of worms which could have entangled each and every politicians of the state? Or was it just stage managed to subdue and destroy the political opponent which was once close confidant, as has been counter-accused by the accused? But then, why the accused filed complaint only after almost two years if they were wrongly accused? Was a deal sealed between Apang and Sanjoy, who as insider says had the power and following to bring down the Apang government at that time and that implicating Sanjoy would mean implicating Apang himself?

Now, since the courts stay for criminal proceedings against Apang expired on 27th August, it is to be seen what events unfolds. People are saying that it’s all ‘power game’ and nothing’s going to come out of it [investigation] and that it would be stopped soon as because if allowed to be carried on, it would take down entire politicians. The case would, finally disappear into oblivion without any outcome.

Whatever events may unfold now, this entire episode has given a shocking indication that secessionist group (UG elements) may be brewing under the patronage of politicians and this, if not stopped now and continued by the politicians all in lust for power, a day would not be far when this peaceful state may turn into a disturbed state, all thanks to the politicians.

Latest event unfolded

In the midst of writing this piece yet another interesting turn of event has unfolded today. Gauhati High Court today admitted a petition seeking a CBI inquiry into former Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Gegong Apang’s acquisition of property disproportionate to his known sources of income. The petition has been filed by one Tana Sunny, president of NGO Arunachal Pradesh Anti-Corruption Front. The case has become quite interesting. It has to be seen how many would be dragged into this corruption case? Time to wait and watch.


Update: Events unfolding Sept 5th

Apang says PIL move orchestrated by Takam Sanjoy to 'politically assassinate' him and that indeed there was attempts on his life.

“There has been an attempt to politically assassinate me in Arunachal Pradesh and a group of persons led by Takam Sanjoy, the adviser to the chief minister, is involved in it,” Apang told reporters today.


He also alleged that there have been several attempts on his life. “I have apprised the party high command regarding the conspiracy against me.”

Read the full story here.


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