There is a threat of militants laying their hands on "local weaponry" used during the recent spate of violence between Muslims and Bodos in Assam, National Minority Commission (NCM) Chairperson Wajahat Habibullah said here today.
Interacting with mediapersons here, Habibullah also said that these weapons have not been confiscated even after repeated warnings from security agencies and also the Minority Commission.
"The report prepared by the Commission says that enough local weaponry is circulating in the hands of Muslims there (the districts hit by violence) and these could be hijacked by terrorist organisation," he said.
Asked to name any terrorist organisation which can commit such an act, Habibullah said, "Any organisation, for example Lashkar-e-Toiba. We know that country is not free from such organisations, whether you call it terrorist organisations or militant groups."
He said that the local population in control of these weapons has become vulnerable to the terror threat because of the weapons they have used.
"Bodos did not surrender their ammunition even though they surrendered long time back. Muslims are using some primitive weapons, but both the groups are armed," he said.
NCM and Planning Commission had recently sent a team to violence-affected districts of Assam. NCM was represented by its member and former IPS officer K N Daruwala.
Habibullah termed the recent violence as failure of local policing and claimed that illegal migration has a very limited role to play in clashes between the two communities.
"It all started with the inaction of local police after deaths of Muslim and Bodos in few separate incidents. First two Muslim youths were killed and then four Bodos were murdered but the police did nothing," he said.
"Illegal migration has a very limited role to play. The tribunal which was set up to detect illegal migration has found, in last ten years, only one illegal migrant in Kokrajhar," he said.
Habibullah also said that migration has been happening in the North East since ages.
"In North east, the entire population is migrant, whether it is Ahoms or any other population. The most recent are the Bengalis, predominantly Muslim Bengalis. But migration in northeast has been taking place since last 200 years. During Mughal era, there was Ahom migration," he said.
Stating that Hindus too have migrated in Tripura, he rejected claims that only Muslims have migrated there.
On a query over internally displaced people, Habibullah favoured a law to protect them and ensure their rehabilitation.
Asked about the Kashmiri Pandits who have been displaced because of two decades of militancy in J-K, he rued that such people who have settled elsewhere do not want to go back.
"A large number of Kashmiri Pandits have settled all over the world and many of them have been doing well. During a recent interaction when I spoke to them they said that yes they are aware of the situation, but they have no real desire to go back. It is something very sad," he said.
He harped on the need for providing a sense of justice among such people.
"In Kokrajhar or in any other place, what is required is restoration of a sense of justice. Whether it is Kokrajhar or Kashmiri pandits of Jammu and Kashmir, or Muslims of Naroda Patiya in Ahmedabad or any other part," the NCM chief said.
Confiscate Weapons of Muslims, Bodos in Kokrajhar: NCM
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