ABDUL GANI | 7 AUGUST, 2017
GUWAHATI: Civil society including authors, advocates, journalists, teachers have written to Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal seeking justice for slain minority students’ leader Lafiqul Islam Ahmed.
Ahmed, a vocal youth leader, was gunned down by unidentified miscreants in broad daylight in Kokrajhar on August 1. He was the president of All BTC Minority Students’ Union (ABMSU).
“We request the honourable chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal to consider providing long-term support to Lafiqul’s family. The government could do this by securing his younger brother with a permanent employment opportunity. This would go a long way not only in showing political goodwill, but also in establishing a sense of social justice,” read the letter which was sent to the CM on Sunday.
In a conflict-ridden region like Bodoland Territorial Area Districts (BTAD), Ahmed’s activism touched so many hearts. “But his death has brought together people from various communities. The show of solidarity and the peaceful protest following his assassination is indeed noteworthy,” said the letter signed by more than 40 individuals from different states in the North East.
Ahmed was known to have started various initiatives against social evils like child marriage and others. He was also vocal for women empowerment.
“For the Bengal-origin Muslim community in Assam that is still struggling with socio-economic issues, such as river erosion induced displacement and wide scale poverty, Lafiqul’s death is a significant loss. He was a progressive youth leader who raised several concerns within the Bengal-origin Muslim community such as child marriage, polygamy, dowry and domestic violence. He also highlighted the need for girls’ education, and even created a women’s wing of the ABMSU,” added the letter.
It further appreciated the CM’s move to write to the centre for a CBI probe while constituting a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to look into the matter.
“We would urge him to follow up with the centre so that the CBI can take over the case as soon as possible,” said the letter.
The police have arrested one person and detained three others in this case so far. Several organizations have also demanded investigation and action.
The signatories include: Indrani Raimedhi, Features Editor, The Assam Tribune, Monirul Hussain, Former HOD, Department of Political Science, Gauhati University, Miguel Das Queah, Child Rights Activist, Kenny Basumatary, Actor and Filmmaker, Kishalay Bhattacharjee, Journalist and Author, Associate Professor of Journalism at OP Jindal University, Kaustubh Deka, Assistant Professor, Centre for Northeast Studies and Policy Research, Jamia Millia Islamia, Patricia Mukhim, Editor, The Shillong Times, Nasreen Habib, Editor, Eclectic Northeast, Anuraag Baruah, Editor, Time8, Bedabrat Bora, Managing Editor, Assam Talks, Mahbabul Haque, Founder and VC, USTM, Haidar Hussain, Ex-Editor, Axomiya Pratidin, Utpal Borpujari, Film Critic, Raju Narzary, Director, NERSWN, Brojo Basumatary, Project Officer, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment, Nitoo Das, Poet and HOD, Department of English, IP College, University of Delhi, Uddipana Goswami, Writer, Dhurjjati Sarma, Assistant Professor, Department of Modern Indian Languages, Gauhati University, Bidhayak Das, Senior Journalist, Mrinal Talukdar, Senior Journalist, Sangeeta Barooah Pisharoty, Deputy Editor, The Wire, Jarjum Ete, Social Activist, Arunachal Pradesh, Dr. Dilip Borah, HOD, Department of Modern Indian Languages, Gauhati University, Anuradha Sarma, Assistant Professor, Department of Modern Indian Languages, Gauhati University, Dr. Sarim Rahman Razdan, Assistant Professor, TISS Guwahati, Kishor Kumar Kalita, Author and Lawyer, Guwahati, Binita Hazarika, Legal Fellow, South Asia Women's Fund, Rahul Devnath, Film Maker, Goalpara, Mustafa Ahmed Barbhuiya, Post Doctoral Fellow at John Hopkins University, USA, Kansai Brahma, Justice Fellow, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, Reema Borah, Film Maker, Sanskrita Bharadwaj, Journalist, Dr. Hafiz Ahmed, President Char Chapori Sahitya Parishad, Dr. Aparajita Sarma, Guwahati, Mukut Lochan Kalita, Convenor, RTE Forum Assam, Prafallla Nath, Assistant Professor, Assam University, Rafiul Ahmed, Assistant Professor, University of Sikkim, Maharishi Sharma, Corporate Lawyer, Thompson Reuters, Dr. Navanil Barua, Director, Neurosurgery, GNRC Dispur, Shalini Sarma, Chairperson, Centre for Ecology, Environment and Sustainable Development, TISS Guwahati, Jeetumoni Basumatary, Assistant Professor, Department of English, Cotton University, Krantik, Musician, Dwijendra Narayan Sarma, Founder Prerona Library, Nalbari, Rajiv Sutradhar, OKD.