Cong-BPF alliance sours over Bodo leaderís arrest

The arrest of senior Bodo People's Front leader Mano Kumar Brahma seems to have strained the relationship between the ruling Congress and its only ally in the state government, the BPF. The BPF leader was arrested after the police recovered two AK-47 rifles during a raid at his residence in the early hours of November 17.

Brahma, executive member (like a Cabinet minister) in the Bodoland Territorial Autonomous Council (BTAC), was allegedly a militant of erstwhile Bodoland Liberation Tigers. The group was disbanded after the Bodo Accord was signed in 2003.

Hagrama Mohilari, the BPF president who was earlier the chairman of disbanded militant group, has alleged that Brahma's arrest is part of a deep-rooted conspiracy against BPF. "Brahma is innocent and his arrest is unjustified," he said, adding, the Congress is trying to create a situation where it could severe the links with his party. "It is trying to force us to quit the alliance. But if the Congress thinks that it has done us a favour by keeping us in the alliance, then it can dissolve the tie-up. But we will not quit on our own," Mohilari said.

He said by arresting Brahma the state government is trying to blame the BPF for its failure to tackle the crisis in Bodoland districts.

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