Sonia, Shinde visit violence-hit Assam areas

August 13th, 2012 - 7:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia Gandhi Guwahati, Aug 13 (IANS) UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde Monday visited Assam where sectarian clashes have left 77 people dead.

Shinde and Gandhi met some of the victims and local officials in the worst hit Kokrajhar and Dhubri districts.

“People here (in Dhubri relief camp) and people there (Kokrajhar relief camp), all want to go back home,” Gandhi said outside a centre housing people rendered homeless following last month’s violence.

“But there is fear in their mind. So they have demanded security from the home minister as well as the chief minister,” Gandhi told reporters.

Both leaders flew from New Delhi into the Lokapriya Gopinth Bordoloi airport near Guwahati and left for Kokrajhar in a helicopter.

Gandhi and Shinde promised all help to those hit by the clashes between Bodo tribals and Bengali-speaking Muslims.

They also met representatives of NGOs, civil society groups and pressure groups and vowed to take steps to ensure lasting peace in the region.

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and some of his ministers accompanied Gandhi and Shinde. After visiting two relief camps in Kokrajhar, they went to four camps in Dhubri district.

The violence has displaced over four lakh people. Gandhi praised the government’s response to the situation.

“I found two children at a relief camp were sick and instructed the doctors to look after them properly,” Gandhi said outside a relief camp in Kokrajhar.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had visited some relief camps in Kokrajhar July 28 and announced Rs.300 crore as immediate aid for the violence-affected people.

–IANS
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