Wednesday, May 22, 2024

CEC told to transfer NGH SP over ‘close ties’ with Tura MP


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Violation of MCC alleged

From Our Correspondent

TURA, April 6: A complaint was filed Saturday afternoon with the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) seeking the transfer of North Garo Hills (NGH) Superintendent of Police, Bruno A Sangma over his close ties with the current Tura MP, Agatha Sangma.
Bruno is the brother-in-law of the husband of Agatha and is also a resident of the same district.
In the complaint lodged by Social activist Nilberth Ch Marak, the NGH district police chief and the Customs Officer of Gasuapara (SGH) have been accused of conniving with smuggling rings to facilitate the illegal import and export of goods (sugar, onion, betel nut among others) to be sent clandestinely into neighbouring Bangladesh.
In the letter to the CEC, Nilberth explained that Garo Hills was witnessing a spurt in the illegal export and import of goods from and to Bangladesh which has hit the local populace extremely hard.
“This is being done without availing the proper document and permission from competent authorities which is required as per law. Thousands of trucks a week have been illegally transporting sugar, onions to Bangladesh and have been going on since the month of Jan 2024 till date,” said the activist.
Nilberth added that various residents of Garo Hills have been lodging verbal complaints to the district police chief requesting him to conduct an inquiry into what was happening to check whether these vehicles were carrying legal documents and necessary licences but the concerned officer has ignored the matter and provided no response.
The NGH district has been the gateway of the illegal trade with vehicles bound for the border to Bangladesh making their entry and exit through the district. Nilberth felt that the illegal import/export could be checked in the various entry points in the district by the police or the customs department but this is not being done intentionally.
Nilberth mentioned Section 11(1) of the Custom Act, 1962 which prohibits the smuggling activities between India and other countries. Further the export of sugar from India has been restricted by the central government.
“Surprisingly, both the Customs department and the SP have been allowing the illegal exporting of goods like sugar onions and other to Bangladesh,” alleged Nilberth.
Further the activist stated that the SP, despite the implementation of Model Code of Conduct for the general election, 2024, reliable sources pointed that the NGH SP invited the Chief Minister and others to his personal residence after MCC was in place.
“This amounts to an election meeting and violation of the MCC as has been stated that ‘Ministers shall not combine their official visit with electioneering work and shall not also make use of official machinery or personnel during the electioneering work,” he added.
On the matter of close family ties of the NGH SP with the Tura MP, Nilberth, in his complaint stated that Kharkutta in NGH was the hometown of the SP and his wife. He is also married to the younger sister of the husband of the Tura MP, Agatha Sangma.
“As a police officer he can influence voters and indirectly campaign in favour of the NPP candidate. As such he should be immediately transferred from Garo Hills,” added the complaint.
Nilberth lastly requested that the CEC, based on the above facts, to take action against the erring officers as per provisions of the law.


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