Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on March 26 issued a statement assuring the people of the state that they need not pay any ransom money to any organization, in response to the Kamtapur Liberation Organization (KLO), a banned terrorist group's extortion notice to traders in Kokrajhar demanding Rs. 5 lakh.
The Chief Minister addressed the issue while speaking to the media, saying that the state police, the government, and he himself are there to ensure that nobody has to pay the demanded sum. He added that if someone feels they do not want to consider such demands, they do not have to pay, and nobody will bother them in Assam.
The KLO, a separatist organization seeking an independent Kamtapur state comprising areas in Assam and West Bengal, has been demanding money from businessmen in the Kokrajhar district of Assam. At least 10 traders have received extortion notices from the banned organization, demanding Rs 5 lakh within 10 days, since March 17.
The traders were asked to contribute or donate a sum of Rs. 5,00,000.00 towards the revolutionary or war fund of the organization within 10 days. Reports suggest that several businessmen received letters from the KLO on their letterhead, and some even received messages from Bangladesh demanding payment.
Many traders have been left scared by the threats and are hesitant to report the matter to the authorities. However, Chief Minister Sarma has assured the people that the government is committed to ensuring their safety and will take swift action against those responsible for such criminal activities.
The Kokrajhar district police have started an investigation into the matter, and reports from different sources are being verified. Assuring the people of their safety, ASP Kokrajhar Nabanita Sharma said, "We have assured them of their safety and promised to take swift action against those responsible for such criminal activities".
The KLO has been waging a war to liberate Kamatapur and the region since 1993, and their demand for money has caused fear and uncertainty among traders in the area. The Chief Minister's statement comes as a relief to the people of Assam, who can now rest assured that the government is working to ensure their safety and security.
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