Former Ulfa commander in fray from Assam’s Kokrajhar seat faces kidnapping charge
GUWAHATI, April 5
[dropcap]F[/dropcap]ormer commander of Ulfa’s 709th battalion Hira Sarania alias Naba Kumar Sarania, who is contesting the election from Kokrajhar as an Independent, has charges of kidnapping for ransom and criminal conspiracy framed against him by court and faces punishment amounting to either death penalty or life imprisonment.
Sarania, who is now a member of the pro-talks Ulfa group led by Arabinda Rajkhowa, has been charged by CBI under Sections 364 (A) and 120 (B) of the IPC for his alleged involvement along with 16 others in the kidnapping of former executive director of Food Corporation of India (FCI), PC Ram, on April 17, 2007. The top official was in captivity till he died in a crossfire between police and his captors on July 11, 2007.Sarania has declared in his affidavit that the court of additional district judge of Kamrup district framed the charges against him in 2012 and the verdict is pending.
Later in 2012, when Sarnia joined the pro-talks group, he was arrested on charges of dacoity and murder by Guwahati police. He has declared in his affidavit that the court has taken cognizance of the case but has not yet framed charges against him. State additional chief electoral officer RC Jain told TOI that Sarania has not been convicted by any court and so he cannot be disqualified on this ground. The scrutiny of nomination of all candidates for Kokrajhar constituency, including that of Sarania, will be done on April 7.
Like Sarania, another former Ulfa militant, Hariprasad Dihingia, is conetsing from Lakhimpur constituency on an AGP ticket. Dihingia has two charges against him framed under TADA and criminal conspiracy by the designated court and Kamrup additional chief judicial magistrate’s court, according to the declaration in his affidavit.
The third former rebel in fray is former Ulfa leader Jiten Gogoi who is pitted as an Independent candidate against chief minister Tarun Gogoi’s son and Congress candidate Gourav in Kaliabor constituency.