Assam TMC chief quits after differences with party top brass

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Guwahati, Aug 2 (IANS) Dipen Pathak, president of the Assam unit of Trinamool Congress (TMC), on Thursday resigned from the party following differences with the party’s top brass over the publication of draft National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam.

Pathak’s resignation came at a time when an eight-member delegation of the party, which landed in Assam to assess the situation post publication of the NRC, was stopped and confined by the police at the Silchar airport on Thursday.

“The party leadership should have consulted me before sending the delegation to Assam. The party top brass has termed the NRC updation process as an exercise to drive out Bengalis and Muslims. But it’s wrong and I can’t accept it,” Pathak told the media at his residence here.

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“Mamata Banerjee is out to incite communal tension in Assam and break age-old harmony. We had asked her to visit Assam several times when Assam faced unprecedented flooding, but she could not find time. Again we asked her to raise Assam’s flood problem in Parliament, which she never did. Now she is out to politicise the NRC issue,” Pathak said.

Assam Director General of Police (DGP) Kuladhar Saikia has, meanwhile, said that the detained TMC delegation is currently at the Silchar airport and they are consulting their senior party leaders to make the next move.

“There was Section 144 in force in Silchar, so we prevented them from going out of the airport. At this, they misbehaved with the police and the civil administration officials present at the airport, leading to injury to two women constables and an administration official,” said the DGP.

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Saikia clarified that the Assam Police had in writing informed the TMC delegation on Wednesday and even on Thursday morning about the imposition of prohibitory orders in Silchar.

“The situation in Assam is peaceful at present and we can’t allow anyone to agitate people by holding meetings and discussions,” said the DGP, adding that the police are also likely to register two cases against the delegation members — one for trying to violate the Section 144 and the other for causing injury to the constables on duty.

–IANS

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